By Festus Ahon, Asaba
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo accompanied by delegates from over 25 agencies are being expected at a two-day business clinic for Micro, Small and Medium Entrepreneurs, MSMEs billed for November 6 and 7 in Asaba, Delta State with over 1,500 participants.
Briefing newsmen on behalf of the planning committee of the clinic, Chief Economic Adviser to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Mr. Kingsley Emu said Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo is being expected as the special guest, adding that agencies being expected include those involved in facilitating the ease of doing business and development finance institutions.
He listed some of the institutions as Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Standard Organisation of Nigeria, SON, Bank of Industry, BoI, explaining that they would display an array of products of doing business.
Emu said over 95 percent of businesses in Nigeria were MSMEs, saying that the clinic has become imperative to significantly address challenges of access to finance and institutions for the budding entrepreneurs.
He said: “We hear loads of money been voted by development finance institutions to be made available to MSME but most of them can’t run down. So the challenges are what we believe the Vice President and his team should be able to address.
“Our expectation is that his presence will match the expectations of MSMEs especially as it requires funding, certification, accountability, and documentation. We believe that some waivers will be granted, we believe that some mileage will be achieved.
“Access to the institutions and finance is a challenge, and with them being here for two days, it will be addressed. The second one is the collateral, the requirement for the drawdown of some of the facilities.
“Some of the MSMEs don’t have them, they are just start-ups, so they should be needing funds that will sustain their start offs. It is not recurrent when you spend a lot of money to grow MSMEs to start up their businesses. The reason being that it is a capital venture.
“If each state is giving N1 billion to the chambers of commerce to be drawn directly by beneficiaries at a single-digit interest rates, without collateral, we will hold the chambers responsible even if we end up losing that money without paying back, I can tell you that we would have achieved a lot of mileage in the process. We truly expect that we will be achieving result”.