Out of a total of 37 million Micro Small and Medium Enterprises in the country, about five million, representing 13.51 per cent, are registered, the Corporate Affairs Commission has said. This indicates that 86.49 per cent of the MSMEs currently in operation are not registered with the CAC.
The Registrar-General/Chief Executive Officer, CAC, Mr. Bello Mamud, made this known while speaking with our correspondent. He spoke on the sidelines of the Fate Foundation policy dialogue series in Lagos. The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria, in a survey it carried out in 2013, had put the number of the MSMEs in the country then at 37,067,416, comprising 36,994,578 micro enterprises; 68,168 small businesses; and 4,670 medium-sized businesses.
Mamud said, SMEDAN said it had about 37 million MSMEs on its register and I say that out of all the MSMEs, we have less than five million registered with the commission. Where are the rest? It means that the rest are unregistered. To ensure that the small businesses were formalised, he said that filling fees at the commission had been reduced by 50 per cent for those between N1m and N5m; while those above N5m were reduced by 25 per cent.
He explained that the commission was partnering the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment to further reduce the fees and other costs of doing business in the country. We are partnering them by reducing the filing fees and we are thinking of reducing it further. We are talking to the minister of trade and investment so that we can reduce the fees further. That will reduce the cost of doing business for them. We have a desk for them in all our offices, Mamud said.
In the World Bank 2016 Ease of Doing Business, Nigeria occupied 169th position, out of 189 economies, with its starting business index ranked at 139th position. The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr. Okechukwu Enelamah, said the Federal Government planned to improve the ease of doing business in the country by identifying the challenges and overcoming them.
Speaking at a forum recently, he said, We need the right policy environment and incentives to revamp the economy. The political will to act is there. When we agree on what to do, please let us do it. We need consistent policies and people we can work with for a long time. There is a genuine interest in promoting made-in-Nigeria goods by ensuring procurement policies will support made-in-Nigeria goods. We are supporting local industries.