FG COMMITED TO STIMULATE ECONOMY THROUGH GENDER FOCUSED INITIATIVES -Katagum
The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Amb. Mariam
Yalwaji Katagum has said that the Federal Government was committed to boosting
the economy through gender focused activities that foster an enabling
environment and stimulate economic activities for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises
The Minister stated this during the launch of African Women Entrepreneurship
Program (AWEP) Promotion of Women Empowerment and Rights( Power – Project) in
Katagum said the occasion was to bring to knowledge the expected roles for
the actualization of the noble cause, most especially some of the opportunities
that the Federal Government has created for MSMEs and the passion for the
empowerment of women at the grass root level in all the States.
The Minister listed some of the activities which included MSMEs Survival
Fund (Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan) which provides 45% opportunities
for women, registration of businesses; 250,000 business names were captured
through this program and most businesses that were yet to be registered were
given the opportunity to be registered free of charge.
Also, linkages with relevant stakeholders for qualitative and quantitative
products and packaging through the Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON),
access to market through Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), and the
N50billion Export Expansion Facility (EEF).
The Minister expressed optimism that the project would definitely provide
women with knowledge and opportunities to access the market, finance, rights
and exposure to new business opportunities by using what the country has to
meet its needs.
Katagum further stated that ” The project is highly commendable and
strategic, as this will help the Federal Government of Nigeria and the Federal
Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, in particular, to actualize one of
its objectives to boost the development of Micro, Small, Medium Enterprises in
the FCT and Nasarawa State as it illustrates active state participation and
She reaffirmed the commitment of the Federal of Industry, Trade and
Investment to deepen collaboration and working relationship with Ministries,
Departments and Agencies and it’s parastatals to improve the fortunes of women.
She added that, “With the onset of trading under the AFCFTA, a clarion
call for all women MSMEs is to stand up and support the gesture of the
government do so as to achieve the economic development and growth of our GDP,
no matter how small, for the overall development of the nation”.
In his welcome remarks, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr. Nasir
Sani-Gwarzo acknowledged that the economic development of women and girls bring
benefits to the welfare of their families and the society in general.
The Permanent Secretary who who was represented by the Deputy Director
Gender in the Ministry further stated that “Effort should be put in place
for necessary mechanisms required for the elimination of gender discrimination
so as to ensure gender parityis strengthened. If women are granted their pride
of place in history, this gesture and development will assist the process of
effectively eradicating poverty, end hunger, achieve food security, ensure
healthy lives and stimulates sustainable development”
The Permanent Secretary congratulated and applauded the leadership and
co-founders of AWEP for the initiative and assured them of the Ministry’s
continuous collaboration to actualize the project locally and nationally in the
promotion of Women Empowerment and Right.
Earlier in her welcome address, the National President of African Women
Entrepreneurship Programme (AWEP),Mrs. Angela Ajala appreciated the Aspire
Coronation Trust Foundation (ACT) for collaborating with AWEP to train 600
women beneficiaries from ten communities in the Federal Capital Territory and
Mrs. Ajala explained that the training would provide the knowledge and
necessary skills to help beneficiaries succeed in life.
She said “The training will take you through the basic skills and
knowledge of the following:
Group formation and benefits, Agriculture as a business, Entrepreneurship and
Business Management, Record Keeping
Marketing and access to markets, Financial Management”.
She therefore challenged all trainees and participants to use the
opportunity wisely to change their lives, impact their communities and change
the poverty trap narrative in many communities.
Part of the highlights of the event was the presentation of the maiden
edition of the National Directory of AWEP to the Minister.
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