Katsina Government, SMEDAN Sign MoU for SMEs’ Development, Industrial Development Center (IDC) Partnership


From Lateef Taiwo

The Katsina State Government through its Enterprise Development Agency ( KASEDA) has signed two Memorandums of Understanding, MoUs, with the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency, SMEDAN, to the tune of N250 million on boosting the capacity and growth of small businesses in Katsina State.

The second MoU was for KASEDA to Partner with of the federal government-owned Industrial Development Centre, IDC in Katsina to develop and boost the SME sector in the state for a period of three years.

The event took place on Thursday at the Corporate Headquarters of SMEDAN in Abuja, with Governor Dikko Umaru Radda, the Director General of SMEDAN, Mr. Charles Odii, and the Director General of KASEDA Hajiya Aisha Aminu presiding over the auspicious MoU affair.

The Minister of State for Youth, Mr. Ayodele Olawande, and Dr. Wale Fasanya, the immediate-past DG of SMEDAN; together with some top Katsina State Government functionaries also graced the event.

While speaking, Governor Radda noted that Medium and Small Scale Enterprises, MSMEs, worldwide, okay a critical role in changing the fortunes of many nations.

“Any leader who aspires to transform Nigeria, must not ignore the MSME sector, which contributes about 50 percent to the country’s nominal GDP, while also providing jobs to about 70 percent of citizens,” he said.

He however, expressed displeasure with the fact that SMEDAN, in recent years, has not succeeded in increasing the number of SMEs it is boosting their capacities. “SMEDAN should no longer be talking about empowering just hundreds of thousands of SMES at this time. We should be talking about millions,” he said.

Governor Radda advised the SMEDAN management to work towards expanding the scope and numbers of Nigerian small businesses who receive their institutional support, particularly monetary funding.

As part of tackling poverty, hunger and youth restiveness in Katsina, he said his administration has approved the sum of N3.4bn to enhance the development of SMEs in the state. Radda also disclosed that two other IDC will soon be established at Daura and Funtua zones to make it three, besides the current one which KASEDA will take our its ownership.

“As part of our commitment to grow Katsina’s economy, the state government will collaborate with the 34 local governments we have to fund our SMEs with about N3.4 billion.

“Each local government is expected to provide 100 million counterpart funds. We shall thereafter identify 10 to 20 enterprises in each local government, that will get our funding support,” he said.

Governor Radda further revealed that his administration will soon embark on building wood and furniture clusters, among other vocational trades development hubs, similar to the ones managed by SMEDAN at its corporate headquarters.

“Our Katsina State Enterprise Development Agency, KASEDA, is currently in the process of selecting small businesses with potential for growth and employing people, in Katsina, to get our support. We plan to give them credits with zero interest rate.

“Equally, in order to boost the capacity of our KASEDA, we shall soon dispatch some of their staff to SMEDAN for them to learn how you are driving Nigeria’s SMEs sector. But again, some SMEDAN staff will also be invited to Katsina and mentor the staff of KASEDA,” he said.

Responding, The DG SMEDAN Mr Charles Odii, expressed delight with the move by the Katsina State Government to partner SMEDAN in advancing the frontiers of Katsina SME sector. “This MoU we just signed will help to curb social unrest in Katsina, while making sure SMEs in the state have easy access to finance and business market,” he said.


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