The European Union, together with the German Agency for International Cooperation, has unveiled a 200 million naira interest-free funding program to boost micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in Kano State.
GIZ Access to Finance and Investment Advisor Mr. Yakubu Musa-Paiko said at the launch of the funding program for MSMEs in garment and leather value chains on Thursday in Kano. .
Musa-Paiko said the program will be implemented as part of the Nigeria Competitiveness Project.
He said that NICOP is being implemented in Abia, Kano, Kaduna, Lagos, Ogun, Oyo and Plateau states.
He said around 2,000 MSMEs are being targeted to tap into the fund, adding that the project has so far disbursed N20 million to 280 MSMEs in Kano State.
He said companies from the tomato, chili, garment and leather value chains have been selected to participate in the project in Kano state.
“We are in Kano, following up on the work we have done to improve the productivity and competitiveness of MSMEs in the leather and garment value chains.
“One of the challenges they face is access to finance, we are working in partnership with JAIZ Bank to develop special support for these MSMEs,” he said.
According to him, the main objective of the project is to stimulate MSMEs, thus creating employment opportunities for the population.
In his remarks, Hajiya Na’imatu Abdullahi, North West Regional Director, JAIZ Bank, reiterated the bank’s commitment to improve access to finance for MSMEs in the country.
This, she said, would help create jobs and eradicate poverty in the country.
Also speaking, Mr. Ibrahim Mukhtar, State Commissioner for Trade and Industry, said the project is important for the development of the state given the large youth population.
Mukhtar said supporting MSMEs would help reduce unemployment and poverty among the population.
He therefore sought the support of development organizations to encourage the growth of small businesses in the state.