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GEM restructured to enhance SMEs



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Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah, has said that the $160 million World Bank’s growth and employment (GEM) project was restructured to improve the small and medium enterprise (SME) sector

 Mr. Bisi Daniels, Strategy Communications Adviser to the Minister, said this in statement stressing that the project has led to the creation of over 26,000 jobs.

 The Minister, noted that the project being implemented by the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (FMITI) would supports micro, small and medium enterprise (MSMEs) operating in information and communications technology (ICT), entertainment, tourism and hospitality, manufacturing, and construction sectors.

 He explained that the project needed to be restructured because the World Bank team had modified its existing equity window to a SME investment fund, which was aimed at boosting growth, creating jobs and increasing entrepreneurship.

The restructuring carried out in conjunction with the World Bank team  will include strengthening the management team to deliver on the promise of the project, deploying more funds directly to SMEs, as opposed to using intermediaries, modifying the project’s existing equity window to an SME investment fund, job creation and increasing entrepreneurship amongst others.

According to him, GEM led to the development of the first Nigeria Leather Policy, which has been validated by stakeholders and approved by the federal executive council (FEC).

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