In a bid to promote self-sustainability and educate members on government policies in the area of skills acquisition and the use of modern technology to enhance their business, the Association of Skilled and Vocational Artisans of Nigeria, ASVAN, in partnership with Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency, SMEDAN, has empowered small business owners with soft loans to boost Small Medium Enterprises in the country.
The National President of ASVAN, Comrade Everest Obijuru while presenting the soft loan to the beneficiaries in Abuja, noted that the soft loan was interest- free aimed at enhancing the creation of wealth and national development among artisans in line with the federal government policy on self-reliance to diversity the economy for national development.
Obijuru who noted that the Association is an umbrella body that co-ordinate the activities of artisans, skill workers and other commercial crafts workers across the federation urged beneficiaries to ensure judicious use of the funds to boost their businesses for sustainability and to pay back the loan to enable others to also benefit from it.
In his remarks, the Director General of SMEDAN, Dr. Diko Radda said the agency is working towards having its microfinance bank to ease access to loan and boost SMEs in the country.
Radda who was represented by the Chief Enterprise Officer in the agency, Mr. Abubakar Aliyu noted that the agency has a mandate to coordinate the activities of SMEs in Nigeria adding that it is working in partnership with an organization to issue loans to some organized group on a single digit interest.
He commended the organizers of the association, urging members to ensure that they pay back loans to create room for others who will want to obtain loan.
Also speaking, the BOT Chairman of ASVAN, Mr. Okolo Emmanuel urged members to use the money collected for projects that will yield return to pave way for others.