Nigeria signs MoU with foundation to implement African enterprise project
The Federal Government of Nigeria has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Nicky Okoye Foundation (NOF) for implementation of the African Enterprise Initiative (AEI), to spur entrepreneurship and global market access.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo, during the MoU signing on Tuesday in Abuja, also inaugurated the Board of Advisors to commence the AEI implementation.
The initiative is founded by Nicky foundation and designed to mobilise domestic investments, capacity building and provision of access to global markets for Nigerian businesses especially, the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).
The minister noted that the ministry was particularly focused on the drive to stimulate establishment of more indigenous MSMEs and support existing ones to grow at global levels.
Adebayo said 2021 marked the commencement of African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) as well as the commencement of global investments drive and efforts designed to rebuild the global economy after COVID-19 pandemic knockdown.
“Both occurrences can produce either negative or positive results depending on how they are managed,” the minister said.
He said that it was in the light of these that the ministry unveiled the strategic partnership for the initiative with the foundation.
Earlier, Dr Nicky Okoye, Founder, Executive Chairman, AEI said the initiative was designed as Nigeria’s innovative tool to create millions of new jobs and build entrepreneurs’ capacity
He said it was also to stimulate economic activities across Africa in response to AfCFTA agreement.
Okoye disclosed newly created corporate institutions under the initiative, including the African Enterprise Institute, African Enterprise Fund and the Community Enterprise Clinic.
He said the corporate institutions would drive the process by collaborating with the ministry and a host of local and international corporate, national and sub-national partners.
Okoye said that the institute would operate some interventions which include Entrepreneurship Bootcamp, Community Enterprise Clinics, African Enterprise Challenge and Fund, among others.
These, according to him, are designed to provide direct access to capital, fund, grants and global investment opportunities for market expansion.
The Foundation, which has its headquarters in Washington DC, is operating in Nigeria to provide support to businesses, for sustainable development and global market access.