The Federal Government is working with private sector partners to establish a world class Shared Facility for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Maiduguri.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said this on Thursday while activating the 30th edition of MSMEs Clinics in Maiduguri.
Osinbajo said that President Muhammadu Buhari had directed that such facility, which must reflect the choices of the people of the state, must be inaugurated within four months.
“As is well known, MSME Clinics serve as a bridge between the Federal Government, state governments and small businesses in each state.
“It does this by bringing all relevant regulatory agencies which work impacts on the business experience of MSMEs together in one place to consult and solve problems over a one to two-day period.
“The idea is similar to providing an opportunity for patients to consult doctors in a mobile clinic.”
He said that the Federal Government had realised that all the needs and queries of MSMEs could not be met in a one-day period which was why state governments were encouraged to establish MSME One-Stop-Shops.
Osinbajo said that the one-stop-shops were office facilities provided by state Governments to house all MSMEs partner agencies so that clients could access their services more readily and cheaply and on a continuous basis.
According to him, shared facilities for MSMEs are yet another innovation of the MSMEs Clinics.
“These facilities are provided to MSMEs clusters by the Federal Government and involves installation of specialised machinery that can be used or rented for short periods by business owners.
“Such facilities spare MSMEs from the financial burden of having to purchase their own equipment while giving them access to the latest equipment.
“It is, therefore a matter of great joy for me to announce today to the hardworking Gov. Babagana Zulum and the entire people of Borno that the Federal Government working with our private sector partners will put up a world class Shared Facility for MSMEs here in Maiduguri.
“Furthermore, the president has directed that such facility which must reflect the choices of the people of the state must be commissioned within four months.
“With these marching orders, the relevant federal and state government agencies and the relevant private sector partners must get to work and quickly identify a viable cluster for the benefit of MSMEs in the state.”
The vice president applauded Zulum over his developmental strides in spite of the security challenges confronting the state.
“Before I conclude, let me say to you, Zulum that the entire country has observed with admiration the dedication, commitment , compassion and integrity that you have approached your duties.
“As a governor of this state, at a time of such immense security, and economic challenges.
“In the midst of the crisis you have built 8,000 housing units, the first flyover in Borno , several mega schools .
“You have demonstrated what is possible with clarity of vision, (even with limited resources) and a love for the people you serve, well done and keep it up,” he said.
Earlier, Zulum said that MSMEs played a pivotal role in the economy of any nation; hence the importance attached to it.
He said MSMEs faced financial constraints, technological challenges, low human resource capacity, power problem, and lack of access to government regulatory agencies among others.
The governor said that the essence of the clinic had redressed the challenges and provide conducive platform for MSMEs to thrive.
“In view of this, the Federal Government came up with this initiative called MSMEs Clinics which is aimed at bringing the regulatory agencies which duties affect MSMEs industries, businesses, to meet with them.
“Thereby giving the MSMEs the opportunity to bring to the agencies the problems of their businesses for solutions outside the formal and sometimes, intimating head offices of these agencies.’’
Zulum said the inauguration of MSMEs Clinics in Maiduguri would provide MSMEs in Borno windows of free business registration, financial assistance and access to financial institutions.
“ In line with our recovery plan and desire for boosting the resilience of our people in the view of insurgency, the Borno government in collaboration with the Bank of Industry has disbursed over N2 billion to MSMEs in 2021.
“This is in order to revive small business activities and expand their horizons”.
On her part, the Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Mariam Katagum, said that the clinics would support small businesses by creating opportunities for them to grow.
She commended Zulum for providing secure and enabling environment for MSMEs to thrive.
In Maiduguri, Osinbajo inaugurated the Doctors’ Quartersi, RCC Resilience Commercial Centre, Mai Deribe Memorial Senior Secondary School, Old Maiduguri and Goni Damgari road project
The vice president also paid a courtesy call on the Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar El-kanemi.
Osinbajo also visited the North-East Learning Centre, El Badawi IDP camp and camp for rehabilitation of repentant Boko Haram insurgents.