The National Association of Small Scale Industrialists (NASSI) says it has trained 50 operators of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the FCT, Abuja on capacity building and industrial skills.
Mrs Lolia Emakpore, Acting Director-General, NASSI, told source in Abuja on Tuesday that the 2019 MSMEs training focused on various areas of corporate governance, accessing fund, business establishment and sustenance.
Emakpore, also a legal practitioner said that the capacity building training was aimed at preparing the MSMEs operators for investment purposes as well as position them to access funds with ease as it was a critical challenge in the sector.
According to her, NASSI is presently working with relevant partners to replicate the training in other states of the federation with an increase in the number of industrialists to train.
“Our major challenge has been funding to support our members; they look up to us to assist in accessing funds through micro finance outfits which provide funding for small business start-ups and scale-up in Nigeria.
“Most MSMEs operators cannot access funds, so the training is geared toward preparing their businesses to be able to access funds from various intervention grants available.
“Subsequently, we will go into training on Information Communication Technology (ICT), globalizing business, cosmetology, food processing, manufacturing and packaging, among others,’’ she said.
Emakpore said that the association was committed to delivering its mandate by encouraging the growth of micro, small and medium industrialists across the nation.
According to her, most times some of the MSMEs are not well structured and do not have their businesses properly registered but with NASSI’s collaboration with Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), their companies are being properly registered.
She said that apart from funding, the MSMEs were also being faced with unfavourable pronouncement or government policies which could affect them adversely.
The industrialists noted one of such pronouncement as the recent National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) pronouncement on multiple tariffs.
She expressed gladness that the tariff was withdrawn and NAFDAC was advised to consult major stakeholders including NASSI next time to work out modalities to implement such policy so that it would not affect the MSMEs ecosystem adversely.
“The MSMEs constitute more than 40 million in the country and 90 percent employment come from them, so the slightest policy direction outcome can affect or impact negatively on businesses,’’ she noted.
The acting Director-General said that the association was also set up to promote effective communication as well as to encourage cross fertilisation of ideas, innovations and technological inventions to enhance productivity among members.
Commending the Federal Government on the recently signed African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreements, she underscored the need for it to sustain policies that would drive the agreement within Nigeria.
“We need to tidy up our home front, it has opened up another area of training for us to educate people on the agreement as regards to standardization, presentation and hand-holding businesses for MSMEs to fit in properly.
“The market is actually for the MSMEs than for the bigger businesses,’’ the industrialist said.
NASSI, a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), established by the Federal Government to develop the MSME’s, strives to design and create programmes to encourage youth entrepreneurship and mentoring.
Amaka E. Nliam