By Miriam Humbe
Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar has urged all Millennium Development Agencies, MDAs, and all stakeholders involved in the implementation and recommendations of the report on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, (MSME) re-classification and its strategic plan to fully commit themselves to it.
The minister said this on Tuesday in Abuja while delivering a keynote address at the public presentation of reports on recommendation on MSME reclassification and strategic framework and implementation plan on MSME re-categorization and enhanced local content development and implementation strategy.
She described the MSMEs as the engine of economic growth of nations, adding that the benefits and multiplier effect of investing in MSMEs sector results in positive socioeconomic impacts at all levels.
“The reports being presented here today outline the strategic visions and goals we have identified to help our MSMEs participate competitively in the global value chain and take advantage of government procurement opportunities. These studies examine the current categorisation of enterprises within the MSME sector and how such classification impacts MSMEs competitiveness in government procurement and intervention programs.
“In its combined role as a buyer and policy maker, government has the opportunity to use public procurement as a tool to realize socioeconomic objectives through the development of various strategies to shape and increase the participation of MSMEs in procurement process while maintaining the principles of transparency, nondiscrimination and maximum competition. This could be achieved by developing a progressive policy framework which is the bedrock of long-term growth and sustainability of any sector, which this effort auspiciously avails us”, she said.
Also speaking, Director General of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria, Dr. Dikko Umar-Raddar who solicited for synergy and cooperation among agencies of government charged with similar mandate of developing the MSMEs said that the agency was working to present the policy on MSMEs which is due for public presentation in the next two weeks.
Engr. Sidi Ali, representative of the Director General of Nigeria Export Promotion Council, Mr. Segun Awolowo thanked the minister and SMEDAN for backing up the study, saying that the sector should never be neglected.
“We want to introduce the export development fund. We have pushed and we have gotten the nod of government to do so”, he said.