Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo has officially flagged off the federal government’s N50 billion Export Expansion Facility Programme (EEFP) and launched the first on-line Grant Management Portal for non-oil exports.
The EEFP is part of the federal government’s N2.3 trillion fund of the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan. The EEFP focuses on cushioning the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on non-oil export businesses thereby safeguarding jobs and creating new jobs.
The EEFP’s primary goal is to increase Nigeria’s export capacity in the near term and export volumes in the medium term.
Delivering his keynote address, Adebayo who chairs the 11-man Steering Committee implementing the EEFP said, “The Ultimate aim of the Export Expansion Facility Programme as an intervention following the devastating economic effects of COVID -19 to exporters and MSMEs in Nigeria will be to save jobs, create jobs, support resilience in shoring up foreign exchange, diversification, modernisation of Nigeria’s economy and acceleration of economic growth and economic support.”
Executive director/CEO of the Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC), Olusegun Awolowo in his speech highlighted areas of the EEFP.
He said, “As we launch the EDF, we will apply the use of technology through the Grant Management Portal which ‘Goes live’ today so that we will be equalising opportunities to achieve inclusive economic growth through non-oil exports.’’
“The Export Development Fund is a pre-shipment incentive stipulated in the NEPC Act, which due to lack of funds was never activated. We were however overjoyed by the provision of the Export Expansion Facility which provided the opportunity for us to finally activate the Fund for our teeming SME exporting companies, who
over the years have been unable to access the active Export Expansion Grant.”
Governor of Jigawa State and chairman NEC National Committee on Export Promotion, Mohammed Badaru Abubakar welcomed the successful launch of the EDF calling it ‘long awaited’ and congratulated the federal government for the emphasis on non-oil exports.