The World Bank and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have expressed their willingness to extend support to Nigerian small- and medium-scale enterprises, as a way of boosting the economy.
The private Punch Newspaper reported on Friday that both institutions expressed dissatisfaction with the current poor level of performance by the SMEs, due mainly to inadequate funding of the sector.
“Enterprise survey shows that labour is cheap and value added is low due to lots of constraints. SMEs’ access to finance is low compared to other African countries like Kenya. Most working capital is financed through internal funds,” a representative of the World Bank, Mr. Micheal Wong, said.
Speaking at a meeting organized by the Nigerian Association of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises, Wong said the World Bank had concluded plans to launch another scheme to support SMEs in Nigeria.
Other institutions at the meeting included the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), the First Bank Nigeria Plc, Heritage Bank, Bank of Agriculture, and other stakeholders in the financial sector.
The financial institutions, in different presentations, identified inadequate access to finance as the major challenge facing SMEs in the country.
In his remarks, CBN representative Jeremiah Abah, said SMEs contributed largely to the development of the economy, stressing that the apex bank was ready to intervene in the growth of SMEs in the country.