The Director General of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria, Charles Odii, has urged the Federal Government to award 25% of its contracts to small and medium enterprises.
He said this is because SMEs contribute about 50% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employ about 60 million people.
Speaking with journalists on Wednesday in Abuja, the DG said, “Government is the biggest spender; the biggest employer of labour. We want small businesses to benefit from contract awards.
“What that means, however, is that small businesses need to be well-equipped to be able to win government contracts.
“96% of businesses in Nigeria are small businesses; so it is only 4 per cent that are big.”
Odii noted that a meeting he held earlier with young legislators and small business owners was aimed at getting a first-hand view of their challenges which mostly bothered on cost and funding.
He assured them that SMEDAN would help small business owners reduce production costs.
“A lot of banks want to give funding, but they can’t give small businesses because they are not adequately structured to receive the funding.
“We shall help at least one million entrepreneurs to structure their businesses to become eligible for such funding,” he added.