Why Made-in-Nigeria will give small businesses a boost

Nigerian Federal Government should be commended for putting the spotlight on local manufacturers through initiatives such as the Made-in-Nigeria Dress Days and an Executive Order compelling state agencies to direct at 40% of procurement to Made-in-Nigeria goods and services.

That’s according to Magnus Nmonwu (http://APO.af/Ik3wAK), Regional Director for Sage in West Africa (www.Sage.com), who says a strong government push to encourage Nigerians to support locally made goods and services will help encourage entrepreneurship. This, in turn, could help spur diversification of the economy, create local jobs, and decrease unemployment. Made-in-Nigeria resonates with the theme of Africa Day (25 May)—“Building a better Africa and a better world”.

“Local service providers and manufacturers could play an important role in the revival of Nigeria’s economy,” he adds. “We welcome the effort to encourage industrialisation and diversify the economy from commodities into new areas. Strong local demand is the foundation of a manufacturing sector that can grow into an export industry.”

Government is putting its money where its mouth is with its Executive Order and giving the public a good example to follow, says Nmonwu. However, there is scope for the public sector to do more to encourage the growth of small businesses in Nigeria, including tax incentives for local producers, support in accessing finance, and facilitating mentoring and skills development programmes between small business and bigger companies.

Government should encourage small businesses to adopt business software so that they can improve regulatory compliance and financial controls. This could also help in tracking the performance of those that benefit from state loans and incentives, and hold them accountable, says Nmonwu.

Infrastructure investment across roads, power, communications and ports are also important in spurring development of local industry, Nmonwu says. “There is enormous scope for government and the private sector to cooperate on creating polices and infrastructure that create an enabling environment for Nigeria’s business builders.”

Sage would support initiatives to put business information and tools online to help entrepreneurs build their skills and access the resources they need to be successful. Another good idea might be for government to put together advisory boards with representatives from big businesses, small companies, the government and other stakeholders to understand the voice of small business and develop appropriate policies to help drive them.

“Small businesses and start-ups are the engines that will power Nigeria’s growth into the future,” Nmonwu says. “The sooner we start supporting our proudly Nigerian suppliers and service providers, the better for us. With our support, they can create wealth and jobs for the country, and many of them could grow into globally competitive exporters.”

Distributed by APO on behalf of Sage.

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Inauguration of the New State Revenue Authority in Aweil

Funded by the Government of Japan, UNDP’s Public Financial Management pilot project is supporting Jubek, Aweil and Gbudue states to establish a unified tax system. The implementation of the tax reform in the three states has commenced and Aweil State has already signed the harmonized State Revenue Authority bill into law, constituted a Revenue Authority Board, and has appointed a new commissioner and his deputy to administrate it. This Friday, Aweil Deputy Governor, Hon. Simon Ober Mawut, along with The Japanese Ambassador to South Sudan, H.E. Kiya Masahiko, and UNDP Senior Advisor, Biplove Choudhary, will officially inaugurate the new Aweil State Revenue Authority.

Through a non-oil revenue tax collection system, the government will be able to mitigate the impact of inadequate budgetary allocation from the central government largely due to sharp fall in oil revenue receipt and fluxes in the international crude oil market. This event is a further step on the commitment and political will of state governments to establish a transparent, accountable and efficient revenue generation system which will enable the state government to provide social services to the people in the state. This pilot program is envisaged to be replicated in other states in the future.

What: Launch of the New Aweil Revenue Authority
When: 26 May 2017 at 11:00am
Where: State Ministry of Finance Compound, Aweil city


  • Aweil Deputy Governor, Simon Ober Mawut
  • The Japanese Ambassador to South Sudan, H.E. Kiya Masahiko
  • UNDP Senior Advisor, Biplove Choudhary

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

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Congratulations to African heads of state and government

The message reads, in part:

“This important date celebrates the victory of the African continent’s peoples in their fight for freedom and independence and their desire for unity in the name of peace, stability, and sustainable development.

African countries have made great strides in their social, economy, scientific, technological and cultural development and play an increasingly important part in building a fair and democratic multipolar world order.

Russia highly values the African Union’s constructive efforts, and those of other regional organisations in Africa to resolve local conflicts and crises and accelerate integration processes on the continent.

It is a pleasure to note the friendly partnership that has evolved in relations between the Russian Federation and the African countries. I would like to reaffirm our desire to continue developing multifaceted and mutually advantageous ties, as well as Russia’s continued participation in the various programmes and projects for Africa, carried out through the UN, the G20, and BRICS”.

Mr Putin wished the peoples of Africa peace and prosperity.

Distributed by APO on behalf of President of Russia.

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Grant approved for drought victims in Ethiopia

The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region has accepted the advice of the Disaster Relief Fund Advisory Committee and approved from the Disaster Relief Fund a grant of $7.488 million to Oxfam Hong Kong for providing relief to drought victims in Ethiopia.

Announcing the grant today (May 25), a spokesman for the Government said that the grant will be used to provide water to victims, health centres, health posts and schools in the affected communities. The Committee hopes the grant will facilitate the provision of timely relief to the victims and help them restore their normal living.

“To ensure that the money is used for the designated purposes, Oxfam Hong Kong will be asked to submit an evaluation report and an audited account on the use of the grant after the relief project has been completed,” the spokesman said.

Distributed by APO on behalf of The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.

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