“SMEs are backbone of Nigeria’s GDP growth & job creation”- Minister

Na'ankwat Dariem

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Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) have been identified as the backbone of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth and job creation in Nigeria.


The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa  Pantami, disclosed this during a virtual discussion centered on dialogue in order to develop Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria.


He commended the USAID on e-Trade and Digital Commerce for the dialogue centered on the digital threat, saying that it is a key part of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.


“Statistics show that as at the end of April 2021, around 48 percent of GDP in Niger was from the SMEs.


“In addition, 80 percent of our jobs in Nigeria fall under the SMEs. So, any sector that dominates GDP on one hand and also drives job creation on the other hand, must be essential to the country.


“It is because of this that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is very passionate about providing an enabling environment for our SMES to be successful.


“If you look at our national digital economy on strategy for digital Nigeria 2020-2030, you will see clearly how our administration is passionate about the development of the digital economy more particularly by  making provision for the SMEs to be successful,”  Pantami said.


He also spoke on the issue of developmental regulation in the ministry:
“There are eight pillars in that policy. Four of them are directly related to SMEs like pillar number one, developmental regulation.


“We came up with a regulation that would support the development and not in anyway retrieve the development.


“Two is about digital literacy and skill for citizens to partake in SMEs through electronic commerce.


“…Pillar number five is about digital services to provide a digital platform for SMEs to succeed.


“…Number eight is about indigene solution that would support eCommerce in Nigeria.


“…These are four pillars out of eight that form part of our national economic policy and strategy in Nigeria.


“In order to support our e-commerce in the country, we have introduced a policy where we supported many entrepreneurs with free domain names in the country.

“During the COVID-19 lockdown e-commerce was registered as part of essential services. That made us comfortable even during the COVID-19 lockdown.


“In addition, we have been working on many policies besides the national digital economy policies that will support our e-commerce.”


On broadband  penetration in the country , the minister stated that it is increasing by the day, and that most villages and cities in the country have been supplied with broadband.