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NASSI Says - We Have Capacity To Create 2m Jobs Annually

Engr. Ezekiel Essien, The National President of the Nigerian Association of Small Scale Industrialists (NASSI), says the association has the capacity to generate about 2 million jobs annually, with support from government.
Engr. Essien stated this on Monday, when he led members of his executive to the office of the Minister of science and technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu in Abuja.
The NASSI President, who lamented so many years of neglect by successive administration, said the association found the minister as dependable able committed partner to actualize their strategic plan for the country.
With the network of its members scattered across the country, he said that the association could create two million jobs yearly if only government would address issues of multiple taxation, power and creation of industrial pack in each state of the federation.
According to him, Nigeria cannot develop if government continue to pay leap service to science and technology from which the small scale industrialists draw strength for development.
‘‘With the right environment, the SMEs can create 2 million jobs annually. Creation of jobs for us is easy because when you create one job, it can create additional 50 jobs.
‘‘We came to intimate the minister on our 2016 strategic plans for the small scale industrialists in Nigeria and to brain storm with him and see how we can develop small scale industries and move them forward to coincide with the wind of change the present administration is blowing across the country.
‘‘We feel that the appointment of the minister was a round spade in a round hole.
‘‘We are aware that it is the activities of the small scale industrialists that sustain every economy. That is why we have come here today to present the way forward to move the SMEs forward.’’
Essien, noted that the importance of SMEs to the economic development of any nation cannot be overemphasized and appealed to federal government to support their six point strategic agenda of building industrial clusters, establishment of technology villages in the states, development of Agro-Cluster production scheme, Small Scale Industries Technology transfer exchange among others
In his response, the Minister described the NASSI as a critical partner to the transformation plan of federal government.
With development of science and technology, the Minister said, Nigeria ought to be in a position to absorb the present economic shock that is currently experienced by the country.
He promised that federal government would do everything possible to encourage small scale industrialists in order to address over importation and unemployment problems confronting the nation.
‘‘With development of science and technology, we will be in a position to absorb the shock that will come. Take the situation we have today, where are dependent on oil and gas. Now we have a shock, assuming our economy has been diversified, with strong industrial base, we would not be importing the thing as we are importing today.
‘‘The pressure on our naira will not be what it is now, and the effect will not be what it is. The recurrent impact will be easier if we had diversified through science and technology. That is why we need to be resilient.’’


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