The Director-General, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), Mr. Umar Dikko, has praised the Osun State government for creating an enabling environment for small businesses in the state to thrive.
Speaking at the 2019 Osun Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise opportunities open fair in Osogbo, the Director-General, who was represented by the Director, Enterprise and Development Promotion in the agency, Mr. Elvans Monday, said Osun State government with upgrade of infrastructure had made the  busineses easy to operate and has allowed SMEs to grow rapidly in the state.
He explained that the major priority of SMEDAN is to promote “made in Nigeria products and services” as well as enhancing the competitiveness SMEs which he said the state government of Osun has done tremendously well on.

He said: “The agency is positioned as a ‘One Stop Shop’ for growing and resuscitating micro, small and medium enterprises in the country and we must commend the state government of Osun for having done much in this regard.

“Our job in Osun has been made so easy easy because of the efforts of the state government especially on the creation of an enabling environment which has helped small businesses to grow.”
In his keynote address, the Osun State governor, Mr. Gboyega Oyetola, who declared the 5-day  fair tagged “Expanding Market Frontiers for MSMES” opened, expressed the readiness his administration to continue to support the growth of  medium and small scale businesses in the state.
He said doing so will boost the economy of the state.

Represented at the event by the Supervisor for Finance, Mr. Bola Oyebamiji, the governor described Osun economy as one dominated by the informal sector.
The governor said he was delighted at the impressive attendance of participants at the  fair, noting that event would positively impact on lives of many Osun business operators.
He commended SMEDAN for performing “tremendously well” since it was created, acknowleding that the agency’s many programmes have touched  millions of lives across Nigeria.
The governor said the SMEDAN’s performance was a testament of its achievements in stimulating and developing MSMEs across the country. 

Oyetola explained that his administration in the next few weeks will role out series of empowerment programmes for women and other small scale enterprises in the state. 

According to the governor: “I appreciate the efforts of SMEDAN in organizing this programme which is aimed at boosting the economy, there is no government that can efficiently add value to the society without considering the micro, small and medium scale enterprises. 

“It is an important scheme and an important sector that any serious government must focus it’s attention on. In the state of Osun, we have been supporting SMEDAN, we have been empowering our people by building their. 

“The current administration is fortunate in that it succeeded a regime which did so well for the development of MSMEs in the last eight years. The immediate past administration led by Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola ensured that through Osun Micro Credit Agency, interest free credit facilities were extended to more than 133 SMEs, 800 cooperative societies, 9,955 individuals across the 30 local government councils and the Area Office in Modakeke. 

“During the same period, in collaboration with the Department for International Development (DFID, UK), the State empowered not less than 5,000 MSMEs under the Growth and Empowerment in States (GEMS) Scheme. Similarly, through Osun Broilers Out-growers Production Scheme (OBOPS), more than 300 millionaires have emerged. 

“These and many more signed post government’s efforts at supporting the revitalization of MSMEs in Osun. For us, we are not leaving any stone unturned regarding MSMEs development and in a matter of weeks from now, we shall unveil various programmes that will see us complementing past gains.

“This present administration too has a focus to continue in that stride. We are going to be empowering our SMEs with huge amount of money. We expect it be productive and add value to our economy and at the same time help in stabilizing our food security.” 

Also speaking, the Zonal Coordinator for SMEDAN, Mr. Gbenga Ogundeji, advised the participants at the open fair to explore the opportunity of using the medium to interface with government regulatory agencies present at the event. 

Goodwill messages were delivered by government regulatory agencies including the National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), the Osun Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Standard Organization of Nigeria, among others.