Entrepreneurs Identify Hurdles, Seek More Gov’t Funding

A cross-section of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) have asked for more of government funding to boost their businesses. They spoke at a forum to mark the 2018 MSMEs day organised by the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEDAN) which held at the FCT-SDS Pavilion and Exhibition Centre in Abuja recently. The CEO of Nafniz Oil, makers of natural coconut oil, Hadiza Sani, said government should go beyond giving loans to grants.
“They should give us finances so that we can grow our businesses. They should help us with machineries so we can produce in large scale. We want grants and not just loans. The grants don’t need to be big but something to put us on our feet,” she said. Another start-up, Abdulhamid Salawo, whose company produces agricultural products, said government should help by providing machineries. “One major problem we have is finance and necessary equipment for better production in a large scale. So, I would like to appeal to the government that if they can make certain policies that will help us start-ups, it will be better for us,” he said.
Director General of SMEDAN, Dr Dikko Umaru Radda, acknowledged that MSMEs faced certain constraints such as proper entrepreneurial knowledge, business advice, training and access to finance. “We have assiduously provided support to businesses through generation and dissemination of business information, provision of business development services, access to finance and access to market amongst others,” he said.