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SMEs: Stakeholders seek policy barring multinationals from indigenous business

By Franklin Alli and PROVIDENCE OBUH

Over 100 stakeholders in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector of the economy, weekend, called on Federal Government to initiate policy that will restrict multinational Companies from infiltrating into indigenous businesses especially those operated by small businesses.

Meanwhile, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment Dr. Olusegun Aganga has bagged a Lifetime Achievement Award for his commitment to enterprise development in Nigeria; other awardees include: Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, DG ITF, Mrs. Juliet Chukkas-Onaeko, Special Adviser on Media, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs. Yemi Kolapo and Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Ayoola Foods Ltd, Engr. Segun Emmanuel Olaye.

Speaking during 4th edition of Commerce and Industry Correspondents Association of Nigeria (CICAM) Workshop and Gala Nite/Award 2014, with the Theme: “The Prospects and Challenges of SMEs in Nigeria,” the operators lamented the incursion of multinational Companies into small businesses where indigenous Companies have competences and comparative advantages.

Director General, Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) Mr. Muda Yusuf, who spoke at the event, cited the taking over of small businesses by multinationals such as Table Water, Chin-Chin, Herbal Drinks, among other products.

According to him “A Situation whereby big companies are competing and taking over the businesses of small companies is not good for the economy.”
The DG, argued that, the indigenous companies have more development value to the money than foreign companies who takes the money they make out of the country while the indigenous one’s reinvest in the economy.

Also, the Director General Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) Alhaji Bature Masari, in his Presentation noted that SMEs are the bedrock of any economy, but in Nigeria SMEs experience challenges that affect their over all well being as entrepreneurs.

He told operators in the sector that beyond having a good business plan and accessing funds from government institutions like Bank of Industry, Bank of Agriculture, especially under the National Enterprise Development Programme, they should upgrade themselves access to information, networking and capacity building programmes put in place by SMEFDAN, saying, “information, training and access to market are key to business survival.”


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