Economy: FG to remove obstacles to business growth —Minister

Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okey Enelamah has said that the federal government was working to create enabling environment for entrepreneurship to thrive in the country.

He said that attention was already being shifted towards making government to become an enabler and catalyst for sustainable business growth and development as well as removing bottlenecks that hamper easy take-off of businesses.

Speaking at a conference on entrepreneurship organized to celebrate golden jubilee of Beta Sigma Fraternity in Abuja,the minister noted that, “If we must do one role as a government, we must create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive and that means removing bottlenecks that hamper easy take-off of businesses and I believe this must come through.”

He said that it was not as if government lacked ideas on what to do to remove obstacles to businesses but noted that the challenge officials had in government was that of implementation.

Enelamah disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari had already given an order for the constitution of a Presidential Business Enabling Council to address the challenges of bureaucratic bottlenecks to starting-off of businesses.

He said the Council, when constituted, would be charged with working out modalities to make businesses easier to succeed in the country.

It would equally identify those obstacles to doing business in the country and offer enduring solutions,” he said.

The minister disclosed that the ministry was currently packaging the Council and according priority to small and medium enterprises through a number of agencies that are affiliated to it.

He said, “Never again will we be a country where government is a hindrance but where government is a help.

“We must develop a system of getting result. As the present administration kicked off, we may have made a slow start-off and that is deeply regretted but this government believes in sustainability of programmes,” he said.

In his speech, the national president of the group and former governor of Enugu State, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo lamented that curriculum in schools did not provide entrepreneurship training and contributed to the army of unemployed graduates.

He said, “It is our belief that if youths are given grounding in entrepreneurship, they will excel and be self-employed and employable. This training will add value to whatever they wish to do and these include but are not limited to skill acquisition, agricultural and agro-based industries, small and medium scale enterprises, trade and service delivery enterprises

“Unfortunately, the educational curriculum in most of our schools does not prepare school leavers for gainful employment hence the army of unemployed and unemployable Nigerian youths keeps increasing exponentially.

“This disposes our country to insecurity as idleness and poverty create a fertile ground for criminality.”