The National Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME) has reiterated its commitment to support youths with outstanding entrepreneurial skills.
The National President of NASME, Dr Abdulrasheed Yerima, made the pledge in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Abuja.
NASME, at its 2022 Youth Empowerment Conference on Thursday in Abuja empowered three youths with cash prizes, technical and mentorship support to boost their businesses.
A total of N2.25 million was given out as cash grants to young entrepreneurs under the NASME national business pitching competition.
The beneficiaries also received business development support for bankable business plans and were made youth ambassadors with one-year free membership subscription to the association.
Yerima said that the association would sustain the business pitching competition to encourage young entrepreneurs have access to finance, technical support and to become more competitive.
“The Nigerian youths are full of energy and very intelligent people so the enterprise challenge is an opportunity available for them to have access to finance technical support so that they can also access local, international and global markets.
“So, it will continue to exist as a platform for young entrepreneurs to actualise their aspirations from being job seekers to be job creators,’’ Yerima said.
He expressed concern that youths were facing difficulties to access funds for their their businesses.
According to him, there are lots of challenges currently facing the youths like access to finance, technical support and capacity for them to manage and sustain their businesses.
“So, that is why we selected those with the best initiatives and we will continue to provide technical support for them so that they can be competitive and access global market,’’ Yerima said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the NASME’s business pitching competition is a platform where young entrepreneurs are encouraged to write business plans for their enterprises.