SMEs will sustain Nigeria’s economic growth, says U.S. Treasury

While demographics and capital can fuel a Nigerian economic boom, small and medium-sized enterprises will sustain its growth, says Wally Adeyemo, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Treasury.

Mr Adeyemo, the highest-ranking member of the African diaspora in President Joe Biden’s administration, who is on a trip to Nigeria, said this on Monday during his visit to Lagos Business School.

He delivered an economic policy speech titled ‘U.S.–Nigeria Economic Relations: People, Entrepreneurship, and Investment’.

According to him, more than 40 million micro, small, and medium-sized businesses in Nigeria employ more than 80 per cent of Nigerians.

These businesses, he said, represent the beating heart of the Nigerian economy.

“In order for these businesses to thrive, they need government policy to go from being the problem to providing solutions. Nigerians are at the heart of the innovation that is blossoming all over Africa,” stated Mr Adeyemo. “From arts to technology, the economy is more diverse today than even a few years ago.”

Mr Adeyemo said Mr Biden recognised that Nigeria’s economic success was important to the approximately 200 million citizens and the region, the continent, and the global economy.

He said Nigeria’s economic and social impact could be felt well beyond her borders with a diaspora that had spread across the world, bringing with them the unbounded creativity and innovation found in every city and village.

The deputy secretary stressed that the United States stood ready and eager to partner with the Nigerian people and government to build a better future.

Mr Adeyemo said some of the steps needed for the type of growth that would create economic opportunity for Nigerians include stabilising the naira, a fiscal strategy that would provide the resources to make critical investments, rooting out corruption and protecting the integrity of Nigeria’s financial system.


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