FG ready to disburse $750 million grant to SMEs and States – PEBEC

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Dr Jumoke Oduwole, Special Adviser to the President, Ease of Doing Business

The Secretary, Presidential Enabling Business Council PEBEC, Dr. Jumoke Oduwale, has disclosed that a $750 million World Bank grant will soon be disbursed to many states and individual managers of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.

Oduwale said this over the weekend in Abuja while updating journalists on events planned for the fourth quarter of the year in addition to other events to honor Nigeria’s anniversary of independence.

According to her, people who meet the requirements and are involved in business growth in their states and the country at large will receive the World Bank Grant.

Dr Oduwale said “part of our programme is that shortly after the presentation on October 1st, PEBEC will unveil its annual report which is to be used to form states action plans as criteria for states to access the $750million World Bank grant.

This is what PEBEC will be doing in the Q4 quarter. We will be launching eligibility process for a 3 year programme plan. And like I said before all the states are to be selected through their capabilities in installing fiber optics for adequate internet provisions before they can access the grants. Those in SMSEs are also to be engaged in several tests against each other and to determine winners who are qualified for the grant.”

The agency-sponsored ominibus law, which is currently in the National Assembly’s second reading, may soon be scheduled for a public hearing, the Secretary also suggested.

According to the former Special Advisor to the President on Trade and Investment, the National Assembly, states, local government units, and PEBEC have all been involved in a number of reforms to ensure proper ease of doing business in Nigeria for economic growth.

The Secretary also hinted that the agency’s sponsored ominibus bill which is at its second reading at the National Assembly, will soon be listed for public hearing.

She calls the law the “business facilitation model,” which will improve the regulatory framework for making it easier to conduct business in the nation than it is in other countries.

In the meanwhile, the agency has planned events to honor SMSEs operators and government employees on October 1 and 2. She pointed out that this is very important as President Muhammadu Buhari’s government comes to an end.

Dr Oduwale, said “PEBEC will be staging program on the ease of doing business to mark the Independent celebration in Nigeria because the SMSEs has been doing well since the past six years. And as we all know, the shorter version of the drama premiered last year December during which we celebrated outstanding SMSEs operators and civil servants. And on this year’s, event, we have carefully selected people who have distinguished themselves on impacting the economy of Nigeria and they shall also be appreciated with PEBEC award by December”.

The Secretary added that SMSEs, government employees, and people from all walks of life would be invited to the NAF Center in Abuja for the theatrical display in October 2022, which would run from October 1 to October 2.

She further said “PEBEC Secretariat is scheduled to host the Play titled ‘The Future is here’ which was premiered at PEBEC 5th anniversary and we will be using this opportunity to spread the word to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Public and Civil servants.

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