- SKillUpImo Project, others drive positive ranking
The South East state of Imo has ranked number one in terms of digital innovation and entrepreneurship development.
The new State of Entrepreneurship Index Report for Nigeria by the FATE Institute of the popular FATE Foundation placed Imo atop other states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Public Relations Officer (PRO), Imo State Ministry of Digital Economy & E-Government, Sandra Opara, disclosed this in a statement.
The entrepreneurship index is a yearly measure of state of entrepreneurship development in Nigeria.
Imo swept the points in the five parameters considered in the study that produced the report. The parameters include business performance; skills acquisition, innovation and digital technology adoption, perception of the future opportunities and enabling business environment. Each parameter carries 20 points.
According to the report, Imo scored 17, 16, 18, 22 and 8 respectively, recording an aggregate Index Score of 82.
With 82 aggregate points, Imo gapped the first runner-up, Bauchi, by 10 points. While Bauchi scored 72 points, Delta scored 70.
In the report, Kaduna, Lagos, Rivers, Oyo, Ogun, and Kano were ranked 8th, 13th , 15th 16th, 17th and 21st respectively, while FCT managed 36th and Taraba 37th positions.After the top three, there are 12 states with between 60 and 69 points; 15 states within 50 and 59; three between 40 and 49 while the last- Kogi, FCT and Taraba scored between 36 and 39 points.
Commenting on the report, the Commissioner for Digital Economy & E-Government in Imo, Dr. Chimezie Amadi, expressed satisfaction that the digital entrepreneurship initiative for the youths was yielding positive result.
“We are happy that our modest work in Imo State, via SkillUpImo Project and other laudable people-centric initiatives, under the leadership of His Excellency, Distinguished Senator Hope Uzodimma, has placed the state on the top of the national log of the State-Level Entrepreneurship Index ranking published by the FATE Institute,” he said.
According to him, SkillUpImo alone, in particular, aims to train 300,000 youths in the state, adding that the implementation has been upbeat, with 5,000 trained in various digital skills, while the ministry targets 15,000 in the second Cohort.
He expressed the governor’s commitment to driving greater entrepreneurship and creating enabling environment for such to thrive, saying that already, big organisations and tech giants were partnering Imo in the drive, as beneficiaries of the scheme, who had been gainfully employed or self-employed, were contributing to the state’s economic development.
FATE Foundation’s Executive Director, Adenike Adeyemi, said: “Given that entrepreneurship is key to the development of any economy through its contribution to job creation, revenue generation and improved citizens’ welfare, this index provides quantifiable information that can help policy makers to assess interventions against a set of indicators – business performance, skill acquisition, innovation and technology adoption, perception of opportunities and an enabling business environment.”