Prof. Muhammed Abdulazeez, Vice Chancellor, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU) Bauchi, has stressed the important role Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) play in the growth, development and industrialization of the country.
Abdulazeez, who was represented by the Deputy Vice Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Ibrahim Danjuma, made the comment in Bauchi on Monday at a conference on Entrepreneurship Development, with the theme: Repositioning Entrepreneurship in Africa through SMEs Development.
“Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) have been identified as productive drivers of inclusive economic growth and development in Nigeria, Africa and around the world.
“In addition, innovative and technology-based SMEs can provide a platform for local, regional and international growth.
“SMEs are considered an important contributor to the economy as drivers of reducing unemployment,and have continued to play significant roles in the growth, development and industrialization of many economies the world over,” he said.
He said it was because of the significance of SMEs that his institution had been collaborating with development partners to provide quality entrepreneural skills to students, with a view to discourage over-dependency on white collar jobs
Also speaking, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Audu Ogbeh, represented by Alhaji Muhammad Yusuf, the state Director, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Bauchi, reiterated Federal Government’s determination to engage unemployed youths in various agricultural skills.
In his address, Dr. Dikko Radda, Director General, Small And Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEDAN),represented by the Northeast Zonal Director of the Agency, Mr Isa Muhammed, stressed the need to reposition the operation of local industries to meet global best practices.