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FG Vows To Support Farmers Nationwide

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The federal government has stated that it would strengthen its partnership with farmers to boost food production and agro-allied businesses in Nigeria.
The Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Mr. George Akume stated this during a meeting with the National Apex of Nigeria Farmers’ Cooperative Societies (NANFACOS) in his office in Abuja.
The NANFACOS is a statutory body established to complement the efforts of the federal government in the agricultural value chain activities.
According to Akume, Nigeria may join the list of countries with serious implications for food security by 2050; but he is optimistic that the country has all it takes to feed the rest of West Africa and beyond.
He said: “Agriculture is the mainstay of many countries, particularly the developing world. There is something unique about agriculture; that is food security. One of the basic needs of man is food. It is the first need of man. If you don’t have food you cannot think well, you become sick and very unproductive. So food is the main need of man.
“Food also provided cash for us in those days in this country before the discovery of oil; agriculture was the mainstay of Nigeria’s economy. You remember the groundnut pyramids in Kano, you remember cocoa in the western region, you remember palm oil in the eastern region and we have beniseed, soya beans which earned the people a lot of money needed, maize, rice, ginger, so many, even fish abound in our waters.”
He reiterated the need for sustainable partnership that would boost agricultural productivity in the country, assuring the body of President Buhari’s support.
A Member of the Board of Trustees of NANFACOS, South East Zone and Chairman/Chief Executive of Innoson Motor Manufacturing Company, Mr. Innocent Ifediaso Chukwuma, in his remarks revealed that his tractor manufacturing plant, which is situated at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, would be commissioned this year.
Chukwuma said that the plant was built to boost agricultural mechanisation in the country, hence making farming attractive to university students.

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UNIDO Provides Free Training For 15,000 SMEs

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The Regional Director, United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), Mr Jean Bakole,  says the organisation has provided free training for 15,000 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.
He said the support for the SMEs was part of UNIDO’s technical support and response which focused on industrial governance.
Noting that the training was aimed at supporting the SMEs on skill acquisition to formarlise their businesses and help them on master plan development, while also facilitating their access to credit, Bakole said the SMEs represented about 96 per cent of the businesses in the country.
He added that attention should be given to them since they are the foundation of industries.
According to him, the SMEs currently contribute 50 per cent of the GDP and have provided over 48 per cent of employment opportunities in the country.
“SMEs are important tools for industries and there is no way a country can move forward in the acceleration of industries without consolidating them.
“Nigeria has  many unemployed youths, and provision and support for SMEs will help in creating jobs, thereby reducing the number of unemployed youths in the country,” he said.
Bakole stressed the need to make changes and initiate strategies to improve the industrial sector.
“It is imperative also to improve on data on SMEs, as they are here to provide services for big scale industry, constituting very good platform to create more jobs in the society.
“SMEs represent 96 per cent of the businesses in the country. We should, therefore, not neglect their   importance in the area of job creation and contributions to the nation’s economic growth,” he said.

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Firm Announces N20m Support Programme For Start-Ups, SMEs

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A leading Nigerian out-of-home advertising service provider, Nimbus Media Ltd., has announced a N20 million Marketing Support Programme for 10 start-ups and Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to mark its 10th anniversary.
Chief Executive Officer/Managing Director of the company,  MrOlawaleAdegoke, said this in a statement on in Abuja.
He said the gesture, which marks a return of its aid project, was the company’s way of giving back to society.
“We have stayed true to our vision of supporting African businesses to achieve maximum reach and impact over the past decade,” he said.
Adegoke said the company had expanded its reach across the country and developed meaningful partnerships with clients, partners, and the advertising industry to ensure excellent service delivery.
According to him, Nimbus plans to contribute significantly to the growth of businesses in the next few years by delivering solutions that enable its clients to reach their consumers.
“Africa, with a population of 1.7 billion people, is one of the world’s fastest-growing consumer markets, with projections of $2.1 trillion in consumer expenditure by 2025,” Adegoke said.
In the statement, a Director at Nimbus, Mrs Victoria Oluwaniyi,  said that 10 pre-seed start-ups and women-owned businesses would receive a month free exposure worth two million naira each on Nimbus digital screens.
The Nimbus Aid Project is a corporate social responsibility effort in which the company gives back to the community by offering eligible start-ups and SMEs one month of free advertising on its digital advertising boards.
“Since its inception in 2016, the Nimbus Aid Project, has supported businesses and non-governmental organisations that demonstrate a dedication to educating, enabling, and empowering their communities to make the world a better place.
“It has also demonstrated its dedication to its clients and African businesses by continually delivering innovative advertising solutions that improve its clients’ reach, visibility, and engagement,” she said.
The Chairman of Nimbus Media Ltd., MrBabsFagade, had earlier said the COVID-19 pandemic created new challenges within the global advertising industry, but that they were able to manoeuvre.
Fagade noted that COVID-19 might not be the last of business disruptions, digital or otherwise, but that they were committed to leading the industry to grow in this regard.
“Now is a unique time to forge and implement the innovations that will lead the outdoor advertising industry into the future”, he said.
Nimbus Aid Project, formerly known as “Nominate a Charity,” had provided marketing support to organisations such as the “Morainbow Down-syndrome Foundation”, and “Ask the Pediatrician”.

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Co-Operative Set To Begin Community Project In Rivers …Finaliises Arrangements For Microfinance Bank

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The President/Chief Executive Officer of iEBSMatrixx Co-operative Investment and Credit Society Limited, Dr. Larry Goodwill Ajiola, has said that the long awaited community project of the group would commence this week in Rivers State.
Disclosing this during the Co-operative’s Executive Meeting in Port Harcourt over the weekend, Dr. Ajiola said the preparedness of the co-operative to carry out the community project, was in line with the Supreme Family Entertainment International Initiative’s poverty alleviation programme.
According to the CEO, who is also a United Nations Eminent Peace Ambassador, the community projects would transform  the lives and businesses of entrepreneurs, especially in the  salon industry.
Ambassador Ajiola noted that the projects, funded by Supreme Family, is also expected to draw close the disbursement of Mama Supreme grant, “in line with the information and directives given by the Supreme CEO, JoiceHemni Matthew Andrew.
“The Supreme CEO has worked tirelessly to put smiles on the faces of the less privileged ones across the nation.
“This is one group that has nothing to do with tribalism but wants the youths,  windows and small businesses to get to the next level”, he stated.
The iEBSMatrixx boss also said the Co-operative is fanalising the arrangements to float the proposed CBN approved Microfinance Bank, saying that, “all things being equal, our microfinance bank may commence operation before the end of this year.
“All those who invested in one project or the other in the Co-operative still have their investment intact. Their investments would be converted to the Co-operative bank shares when we fully commence”, he said.
He reiterated that the Co-operative has undergone many challenges over the years, adding that 2022 is marking the beginning of a new era for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the organisation.
The CEO also said the Co-operative will elect new executive members that would run the organisation for the next four years.
He called on the members to ensure that they do everything possible to sustain their businesses, adding that there are better days ahead.

By: Lilian Peters

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