Abuja- The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) has called for a downward review of the needed collateralisation to access the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Fund.
The Director-General of SMEDAN, Mr Bature Masari who made the call while briefing newsmen in Abuja on Thursday said the collateralization should be reviewed to 20 per cent.
Masari said the fund’s custodian, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), put the collateralisation at 50 per cent before any commercial bank could access the N220 billion fund.
He said the 2010 MSME survey findings revealed that lack of access to funding was the major challenge mitigating against the MSME development in the country.
“That is why we are recommending in the new National Policy on MSME Development that CBN should reduce it from 50 per cent to 20 to enable commercial banks access the fund.
“This will also enable the MSME operators to walk to any commercial bank to access the fund to expand their businesses or start new businesses,’’ the director-general said.
He also said the agency was planning to establish a crowd fund to serve as an alternative funding for MSME operators.
Masari said the measure became necessary because the Federal Government’s N220 billion MSME fund could not address the problems of MSMEs.
“Crowd funding is a fund sourced from developed countries to develop MSMEs. It has various components, but we will ensure that we take the components that are applicable to Nigeria,’’ he said.
Masari said the survey findings also identified the lack of market access as one of the factors militating against MSME development.
He said the agency created a department to showcase Made-in-Nigeria products within and outside the country and ensure that they were better produced and packaged.
The director-general said SMEDAN was collaborating with the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) to conduct a fresh survey on MSMEs.
“The survey is to update the 2010 survey findings and determine the contributions of the sub-sector to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employment,’’ he said.
Masari said the survey was to determine the number of MSMEs in Nigeria on geo-political, state and sectoral basis and identify the challenges facing the operations of MSMEs in Nigeria.(NAN)