US firm tasks FG on legislation to support MSMEs

Dun & Bradstreet, a global credit bureau, has called on the Federal government to ensure legislation that would help the growth of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMES) in the country. Mr Rajesh Mirchandani, Chief Executive Officer of the company, told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN ) in Abuja that the MSMEs have great role to play in every economy. Dun & Bradstreet is financial services firm with its headquarters in the United State, He said that a good legislation to support MSMEs would help to drive the desired economic growth and development needed in the country.

He said that Nigeria could adopt the Indian style where big companies were subjected through legislation to patronize small businesses in the same industrial value chain.

This, he said, helped small business in their country to grow and thereby help in job creation, economic growth and development. “Nigerian government must have the political will to support small businesses. Yes, they are doing something but good legislation will help to achieve a greater result. NAN reports that the firm is currently hosting the MSMEs portal currently launched by Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEDAN) to build the accurate database of MSMEs in the Country. Commenting on the portal, Mirchandani said much awareness was needed to help small business owners understand the need for them to enroll in the portal. He said that one of the major challenges which the company witnessed while trying to get small business owners registered in the portal was the fear of them been disturbed by government and revenue agencies.

“I think the biggest challenge that we have and have had, and it is not peculiar to Nigeria, is the reluctance for the people to volunteer information for various reasons. Some feel that their data will go to the tax authorities; some feel that competitor will get hold of the data and so, they always wanted to keep their data close to their chest. We have to convince them on why disclosing their data is going to help them get more prominence, and gain credibility. I think the biggest challenge is the fear of their data becoming more public,” he said. He noted that the decision by some companies to hide their identities was counterproductive; as such companies would never be known and seen by potential investors.

He said that for Nigeria to make good economic policies there was the need for it to build a database on MSMEs and other sectors of the economy.

He called on all small business owners to register in the portal for its huge benefit, adding that it was only few information on the company that were required for registration.

NAN reports that the first phase of the portal had registered some MSMEs in four states while the second phase would accommodate others. (NAN)

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