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How Buhari Plans To Boost SMEs Through BIG Platform

World is set to assist the Federal Government to boost small businesses. Ministry of trade and investment says Small and Medium Enterprises will soon become better in productivity. The Buhari-led administration will focus on at least five areas of development.

The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, through the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment has set machineries in motion to assist Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria, with the introduction of the programme themed- ‘Business, Innovation and Growth, BIG Platform.

The trade ministry informed that there is enough assistance coming from the World Bank. The ministry issued a statement on its website, seeking to grow SMEs in the country, along the lines of sales, in addition to creating jobs opportunities for the citizens. President Muhammadu Buhari The statement issued reads: “The Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, (FMITI) with the support of the World Bank seek to grow small businesses in Nigeria.

These businesses will be boosted along the lines of sales and employment, so that we can eventually grow our economy and reduce our dependence on crude oil. “This initiative is called the Business, Innovation and Growth (BIG) Platform and it is operationalised in the Growth and Employment (GEM) Project.  “The FMITI and World Bank have identified five sectors that have high potential for growth in Nigeria; and these are the sectors that will be accessing the support the BIG Platform will be offering. The sectors include – Construction, Entertainment, Hospitality, Information and Communication Technology, ICT and Light Manufacturing (Including Agro processing).

“The participating businesses will receive support in the following ways: Free Technical Assistance: Including training and consulting services and possibly; Grants: Available in 5 categories: Equity, Matching, Performance, Institutional, Innovative.”

While revealing how the people could register for the BIG Platform initiative, the statement further stated: “The steps to accessing this support is: Log on to the BIG Platform (www.bigportal.org.ng), create an account and register your business, Attend an induction workshop and Access the various services available on the BIG Platform.

“We welcome existing Nigerian businesses operating within the aforementioned sectors to register their business on the BIG Platform to benefit from this project.” As the federal government is trying to improve the economy on different frontiers, a ministerial technical audit committee set up to find out details of the contracts given out by the Ministry of Niger Delta between 2009 and 2015 stated that many of the contracts awarded by the ministry in the Niger Delta region had no positive effect on the lives of people in the area.

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