Lagos - Up-and-coming businesses have formed the Association of Small Business Owners (ASBON) with the aim of increasing their contribution to economic growth.
Officials said the firms had the potential of contributing more than N800 billion ($4,8 billion US) annual if given the necessary support by government.
The organisation believes if the potentials of small businesses are properly harnessed, the sector could contribute up to 25 percent to the Gross Domestic Product, create employment opportunities and provide stable revenue for government.
Speaking ahead of the official unveiling of the association, President of ASBON, Dr Olufemi Egbesola, urged the government to prepare for a “post petroleum” economy is by growing the small business sector.
He noted that government needed to continually empower the small business owners to occupy their rightful place in the nation’s economy, saying neglecting the sector would pose as serious economic implications for the country.
“If all our potentials are properly annexed and channeled, small business can contribute between 21 - 25 percent to our GDP, generate enormous employment opportunities and provide a stable source of revenue for government for the financing of socio-economic programmes,” said Egbesola.
“The sure bet for preparing for the post petroleum economy is by growing the small business sector. Small businesses need to be given all the needed support. Small businesses need to occupy a prominent place in the nation's post petroleum economy as oil has gradually pushed Nigeria into a mono-product economy over the years.”
Egbesola subsequently appealed to the state and federal government to come up with promotions and incentives for small businesses.
He said members of the association would commence an awareness campaign on Tuesday to inform the public of the role of the association. The event is scheduled for Ikeja.
This will culminate in the formal unveiling of the association on Thursday in Lagos.
Some dignitaries expected at the event include Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, his Ogun State counterpart, Ibikunle Amosun, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Lamido Sanusi, and senior officials from local banks.
- CAJ News