May 24, 2024

The Federal Government plans to disburse N250bn as loans to Medium-scale, Small and Micro Enterprises to boost job creation across the country.

According to the National Development Plan 2021–2025 (Volume II), a copy of which was obtained by The PUNCH, the Federal Government plans to increase loan disbursements to the MSMEs from N190bn from N440bn.

The government said the proposed loans were a part of its employment and job creation plan which among other things seeks to address the challenge of harnessing the potential of the youth demography into a productive force for growth and poverty reduction.

The report said Nigeria’s vision for 2025 would build on past plans’ progress to support the formalisation process of the MSMEs and align strategies across high growth sectors to ultimately drive massive job creation.

The government also disclosed plans to adopt these strategies to drive job creation.

According to the report, the proposal seeks to “create inter-sectoral linkages to unlock the potential of high growth sectors critical to job creation by mapping and identifying synergies and opportunities with the most potential for massive yet sustainable job creation; support MSMEs business viability to spur job creation by supporting the standardization of operations and increasing access to finance, and develop a partnership framework with the private sector by identifying skills gaps and designing skills development programmes aligned with their needs.”

It added that providing easy access to finance for MSMEs is critical to delivering jobs and ultimately lifting millions out of poverty during the five-year period which the NDP covers.

To achieve this, the government, through the Development Bank of Nigeria intends to provide technical assistance to partner financial institutions to improve their MSME lending capacity, build MSMEs operational efficiency and ability to access funding,  and provide concessionary loans and credit guarantees.

The plan stated that the government also plans to, among other things, increase the value of loans guaranteed from N6.2bn to N116.5bn and train 375 MSMEs by 2023.

There are also plans to create 25 million jobs by 2025, according to the document.

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