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7,800 women-led SMEs get NEPC’s funding support

The Executive Director of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, Nonye Ayeni, has revealed that a total of N7,800 women-led Small and Medium Enterprises have so far benefited from its funding support under the #SheTrades intervention programme.

Ayeni made the revelation yesterday in Abuja during the SheTrades Nigeria interactive session with the Director General of the World Trade Organisation, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

She said the WTO/ITC interactive session with the SheTrades Nigerian Hub and other key stakeholders was part of sideline activities to mark the launch of WTO/ITC Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF) for Sesame and Cowpea by the director general of WTO.

“Since 2016, the NEPC has registered 29, 000 exporters and by 2017, the council launched the Women in Export Development Programme and assigned women desk officers in all its regional and state coordinating offices to provide advisory services for women-led businesses across Nigeria.

“More importantly, from 2018 till date, about 7,800 women entrepreneurs have been supported to enhance their export operations through the SheTrades Nigeria Hub. Through collaboration with the public and private sector, the Women in Export Development Programme has recorded some successes in terms of the provision of better trade opportunities for women, engagement with women groups to build better support networks and access to information and resources for women-led MSMEs, “ Ayeni said. 

Director General of the WTO, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, said research by the WTO has shown that women who export earn three times more than women who trade domestically.

In another development, the NEPC ED has inaugurated the steering committee for the implementation of the WTO’s Standards and Trade Development Facility (WTO/STDF) to ensure that the programme achieves its target. 

According to Ayeni, The Committee comprising of the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) National Agency for Food anf Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) among others will drive the implementation by ensuring that exporters meeting standard requirements.


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