WITH unemployment rates at historic levels due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, small businesses have urged the government to invest in areas that will help get more people back to work. Saviour Iche, president of, Association of Micro Entrepreneurs of Nigeria, AMEN, urged the government to prioritise implementation of a comprehensive infrastructure programme to support businesses expand their operations and provide employment opportunities for many Nigerians.
Even before feeling the economic impacts of COVID-19, Iche said the country was in dire need of upgrades as under-investment had led to infrastructure worsening by the year. He noted that it had been challenging for small scale manufacturers relying on outdated roads, bridges, waterways.
According to him, the deficiencies have taken toll on manufacturers’ bottom lines, causing unreliable delivery times and increased transportation costs for small business owners moving goods and raw materials. For small businesses to remain competitive, Iche urged the government to commit to improving infrastructure by upgrading the nation’s neglected transportation systems.
Iche said keeping infrastructure projects afloat is only a start and that repairing deteriorating infrastructure should not be a federal issue. He stressed that it is a challenge that directly affects the nation’s ability to compete in the marketplace. He maintained that rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure would ensure that the nation emerges a stronger, competitive economy, adding that it will not only put Nigerians back to work but will help manufacturers better serve their customers and communities.
– May 29, 2020 @ 16:23 GMT |