The Nigerian government has said its post-COVID-19 recovery plan will both save and generate about five million jobs.
Richard Adebayo, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment disclosed in a statement issued on Thursday and signed by Julius Toba-Jegede, his Special Assistant on Media and Productivity, that plans were in progress to save 1.4 million jobs of Nigerian citizens.
“These interventions will save and create about five million jobs, support continued operations, and increase production capacity in priority sectors, as well as protect MSMEs from the shocks of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We expect that the Survival Fund will save 1.4 million jobs across the country with 40 per cent of them in the female-owned MSMEs and 10 per cent in businesses owned by persons with special needs,” he said.
He stated that the decision was part of his ministry’s contribution in playing a prime role in the Nigerian government’s delivery of real sector interventions as contained in its economic sustainability plan following the coronavirus outbreak.
Mr Adebayo noted that three programmes had been put in place to achieve the plan and listed them as the MSME Survival Fund, Credit Support to MSMEs and Guaranteed Off-take Stimulus Scheme.
“The Guaranteed Offtatake Stimulus Scheme’s objective is to protect jobs, stimulate economic activities across the country and protect the income of vulnerable MSMEs by guaranteeing offtake of items produced by these businesses. The scheme will save an additional 300,000 jobs in MSMEs nationwide.
“The Credit Support to MSMEs and Priority Sector will provide affordable finance to key sectors impacted by the pandemic and enable an increase in manufacturing capacity in priority sectors. This scheme will save and create an additional three million jobs and will be implemented through N50 billion MSME de-risking facility, N100 billion intervention fund for priority sectors.”
He identified the sectors as agro-processing, healthcare, creative industry, local oil and gas, and exports.
The minister mentioned that there would be N150 billion Capitalisation Fund and a N50 billion Export Expansion Facility.
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