The President, Successedge Export Network, SEEN, a subsidiary of Successedge International Limited, Mr. Godwin Oyefeso, has reiterated the need to promote non-oil export as the only way for the country to be out of its current economic recession.
Speaking at a forum termed ‘Money for Business Conference’ with theme ‘How SME can Survive in an Economic Recession Using Non-oil Export Alternative’ organised by the company on Saturday, Oyefeso said the country could not survive if it refused to promote exportation of its value added commodities.
He said the current economic recession presents opportunities for SMEs to grow especially in the aspect of export. He noted that most successful companies started during economic recession.
He therefore urged the SME exporters to always add value to their products and make them meet international standards for exportation.
He informed that many SMEs exporters were passionate about their profit thereby compromising the quality of their products and as a result, the products would not meet the required standards.
Speaking about the conference, Oyefeso said it was organised purposely to inform and introduce the SME operators to those channels through which they could have access to finance as many financial institutions including banks were invited to enlighten them on easy access to fund. He noted that many SMEs were not aware of those channels, adding that many of them, despite knowing the availability of some government intervention fund for export, lack the knowledge of institutions through which they get the fund.
It was also an avenue to disseminate information to the SME exporters as he said that many of them lack information on how to grow their business.
However, Oyefeso said the federal government was not committed to developing non-oil export due the huge revenue it got from crude oil.
He said, “The government is not serious about non-oil commodities export because it has easy way to make cheap money from oil. If the government is serious about export, there are lots of policies and guidelines it would have rolled out to make that aspect of the economy very viable. For instance, by January now, you would see many foreigner especially the Indians in our bush taking our raw materials away, which we cannot do in their own country.”
Meanwhile, an official of Grofin international, an SME fund supporting organisation, Mr. Femi Salami, said the challenge to SMEs was not just access to money but for them to create viable businesses that deliver sustainable returns and social impact. He maintained that so many SME operators lack the ability and knowledge to produce sustainable products, which financial institution could. Support.
Also, the formal Director General of Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, NACCIMA, Dr. John Isemede said the financial institution in the country did not cater for the export; they only supported those who import goods into the country, thereby underdeveloping the local production capacity.
He said no entrepreneur could do business all alone with the external support.
He also charged the government to make non-oil export a priority as a way to relieve the country of the ongoing economic recession.
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