The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Amb Mariam Katagum, on Thursday, in Abuja, expressed government readiness to begin the implementation of the N75bn survival funds to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) across the 36 states in the country.
Speaking at a press briefing, Katagum stated that the programme was to “provide an update on the N75bn National MSMEs Survival Fund and the Guaranteed Off-take Stimulus Schemes under the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan (NESP).
“Gentlemen of the press, you will recall the last world press conference which we held on Thursday, September 10, 2020, and our promise to keep updating you from time to time on the progress in the implementation of the National MSME Survival Fund.
“You will recall that the Scheme is a cluster of Grants intended to support vulnerable micro and small enterprises in meeting their payroll obligations and safeguard jobs within the MSME space from the shock of the Covid19 Pandemic”.
According to her, the specific objectives are to “stimulate direct local production in the 36 States of the Federation and the FCT by enabling MSME’s in the production sector with funds to stimulate ‘post-COVID lockdown’ off-take products.
“Augment the payroll obligations of businesses in the Health, production, Education, Hospitality and Food production sectors.
“Provide 50,000 Naira grants each to an additional eligible 100,000 MSMEs.
“The program is to save over One Million, Seven Hundred Thousand (1,700,000) jobs” she noted.
Katagum said “special focus will be given to 45 per cent female-owned MSME’s and per cent Special needs owned MSME’s and give grants to self-employed individuals especially service providers like Bus drivers, Taxi drivers, rideshare drivers and artisans such as electricians and plumbers. You will also recall that the scheme will be implemented along the following tracks:
“PAYROLL SUPPORT – This track targets 500,000 individual beneficiaries. The scheme will support MSME payroll obligations by paying between N50,000 (max) and N30,000 (min) to between 3 (min) and 10 (max) staff for 3 months. MSMEs in this category are required to have a minimum of 3 and maximum of 50 Staff on their payroll to qualify.
TARGET BENEFICIARIES – MSMEs in the Hospitality industry, Private Schools, Factory owners, Law Firms, Hospitals etc.
“GENERAL MSME GRANTS – N50,000 Grants to 100,000 MSMEs. This group of beneficiaries is encouraged to take advantage of registration through MSME Associations, registered Business Clusters, Trade Associations and Unions etc” the Minister stated.
She said the government will register 250,000 new businesses with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) tt no cost to the MSMEs. “The FG will pay CAC N6,000 for each registration. TARGET BENEFICIARIES – All MSMEs that require formalisation.
“ARTISAN TRANSPORT GRANTS- One-off Payment of N30,000 to each beneficiary. The following shall be the categories of self-employed individuals eligible to participate in the Survival Fund Scheme.
TARGET BENEFICIARIES – Mechanics, Taxi Drivers, Hairdressers, Keke Napep Riders, Okada riders, plumbers, electricians etc.
“GUARANTEED OFFTAKE STIMULUS SCHEME – The objective of the MSME Guaranteed Offtake Stimulus Scheme is to protect and sustain the income of vulnerable Micro and Small Enterprises by guaranteeing the offtake of their products like; Face Masks, Hand sanitizer, Liquid Soap, Disinfectant and Processed Foods.
“Gentlemen of the press, I am pleased to inform you that Registration for the MSME Survival Fund commenced on the 21st September 2020 at 11 pm. Within the first 24 hours, approximately 138,000 individuals had logged on, created profiles, and completed the first stage of registration with Kano, Kaduna, and Lagos as the lead states.
“All successful applicants received SMS and email verification with a list of requirements for the second stage of application which will commence on 1/10/2020. Applicants will be required to upload details supporting their applications which will be verified and if successful, approved for disbursements.”
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She said the following states recorded the highest number of applications in the first 24hrs of registration: “Kano – 16,880, Kaduna – 11,438, Lagos – 10, 530, Katsina – 7,354 and Bauchi – 6,622.
“As at 8.30 am this morning, total successful registrations stood at 174,574 with the following states having the highest applications as follows: Kano: 19,895, Kaduna:13,575, Lagos: 13,640, Katsina: 8,383 and FCT: 8,085
“Registration for other tracks will start as follows: Hospitality industry 25/09/2020 – 10:00 AM, Payroll Support (others) 28/09/2020 – 10:00 AM and artisan/Transport Grants 1/10/2020 the Minister noted that some states and local governments that have low access to network connectivity and internet services are experiencing delays with registration. However, “we also have feedback that State Governments and trade associations are putting in place innovative strategies to deal with the situation,” she stated.
FG releases N75bn survival funds, provide N50,000 stimulate to 100,000 MSMEs