So Far, 174,574 Nigerians Apply For N75b MSME COVID-19 Survival Funds

Mariam Katagum straightnews
Mariam Katagum

So far, Federal Government of Nigeria has received 174,574 applications for the N75 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) survival funds.

It is an initiative by the government to ensuring the survival of Nigerian MSMEs.

Registration for the Payroll Support Scheme for the MSME Survival Fund commenced at 10 p.m. on Monday, September 21, 2020.

Gloria Adagbon, a Nigerian lawyer and human rights activist, tweeted “As at today the 24th Sept, the total successful registration is 174,574 with the following states having the highest applications as follows: Kano -19,895, Kaduna – 13575, Lagos -13,640, Katsina-8,383 and FCT – 8,085.”

On Tuesday, Mrs Mariam Katagum, Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, had said government had received 38,000 applications for the N75 billion MSME survival funds.

Speaking at a Business Advocacy Roundtable webinar by the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC), Katagum said the applications were coming in barely one day after the registration portal for the fund was opened on September 21.

She explained that N75 billion survival funds would serve 1.7 million beneficiaries across the country.

Katagum said the MSME survival funds with payroll support scheme for different sectors would start with educational institutions, followed by businesses in the hospitality industry and then small businesses.

“The payroll would provide support between N30,000 and N50,000 for 500,000 vulnerable MSMEs to meet their obligations per employee over a duration of three months.

“A total of 250,000 new businesses will get free Corporate Affairs Commission business name registration,’’ the minister said.

According to her, 100,000 businesses affected by the pandemic would get N50,000 each and 330,000 artisans and transport business operators would get N30,000 to reduce the effect on loss of income.

At the occasion, Mr Shubham Chaudhari, World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, said the pandemic had put the nation at a very critical juncture.

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Chaudhari advised the nation’s response to go beyond the immediate crisis to exploiting the various opportunities that abound going forward.

“The pandemic has provided opportunities that can be harnessed even in crisis.

“We would continue to provide bilateral and multilateral support to ensure trade channels are opened,” Chaudhari said.