‘Current economic downturn an opportunity for entrepreneurship’

The director-general of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, (LCCI), Mr. Muda Yusuf has declared that there is great opportunity for entrepreneurship development with the current economic challenges in Nigeria.

He said the economic situation would compel Nigerians to look inward for their local products development rather than depend on importation of virtually all the needs.

In his keynote address at the Youthpreneur Business Summit 2016 in Lagos, titled “Passion to Wealth: Road to Economic Diversification,” Yusuf said the high rate of naira to dollar is an opportunity to increase locally produced goods as most of the importers of such goods would not be able to import.

He said, “Nigeria’s current economic situation is not hopeless; it presents opportunities to grow our home-base businesses, entrepreneurship along value chains in various sectors of the economy.” He therefore challenged the youths especially the graduates to venture into entrepreneurship rather than seek white collar jobs.

According to him, the basic essence of formal education irrespective of their disciplines is the development of intellectual capacity as well as entrepreneurial skill development. However, Yusuf said one of the challenges of small businesses in the country was marketing strategy among the entrepreneurs.

He added that while startup might not be a real challenge, the ability to sustain the business remained the main challenge. He further noted that many entrepreneurs failed because they refused to learn about the business before venturing into it.

While also noting that unconducive business environment remained a threat for entrepreneurship to thrive in the country, he said the environment could be created on individual capacity. He therefore advised would-be entrepreneurs to do away with the business that requires much power, energy and foreign exchange.

Also speaking, the Lagos State commissioner for Wealth Creation and Employment, Mr. Babatunde Durosinmi-Etti, also identified lack of cognitive and cognate skills in the entrepreneurship pursuit as a major challenge inhibiting the youths from thriving in their businesses.

The commissioner, who was represented by an official in the ministry, Mr. Babatunde Daud, further said that access to capital by the youths constituted another challenge to entrepreneurship development among the youths.

Photo Credit: Punchng.com

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