Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, the Director-General, National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), has called on the youths to develop entrepreneurial skills to reduce unemployment.
In a statement on Saturday, Adeyeye made the call at the 4th Annual Lecture and Matriculation ceremony of Kings University, Ode-Omu, Osun State.
According to her, entrepreneurial skill is the driving tool of transformation for any meaningful development and has been piloted by the youth mostly in the developed countries of the world.
“The driving tool of this transformation has been the same young, educated and talented generation popularly known as ‘Millennial Entrepreneurs.
“However, challenges abound in the endeavour as many factors have been identified to be militating against Small and Medium Enterprises entrepreneurial development in Nigeria.
“These factors include: obtaining finance, monetary policy, lack of electricity supply, poor policy among others.
“This raises an issue regarding the need for an enabling environment and support system to promote SMEs in Nigeria, especially among the youth population,’’ she added.
She said that the government had put in place an initiative among which is the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC), in line with the national policy on economic diversification.
She said that the policy was to remove bureaucratic constraints to doing business in Nigeria and make the country a progressively easier place to start and grow a business.
The DG mentioned other crowdfunding for agricultural practice initiatives to enhance entrepreneurship.
According to her, the role of regulatory agencies with the advent of young entrepreneurs in all facets of industry and commerce is crucial to bringing innovations, product development and service deliveries, especially in the evolving non-oil industries.
She said that the basic role of the regulatory agencies in all those was to facilitate the process and embracing the use of ICT in service delivery.
She said that the present generation had the opportunity to bring about growth in regulatory science where standards and new tools were needed for evaluation of the quality, safety and efficacy of medicines.
According to her, the goal is to determine the benefit-risk ratio in order to understand sound regulatory decisions that will protect the health of the population.
She added that the digitisation of the regulatory processes was another area where the present generation of youth could fit in very well due to the seamlessness that resulted from such implementation.
“A lot of innovations have taken place in food formulations and the packaging of local foods.
“NAFDAC identified the challenges of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the registration of their products and therefore instituted several activities which included a further review of guidelines.
“The aim is to remove critical bottlenecks and bureaucratic red tapes that hinder the smooth registration and regulatory activities of MSMEs,’’ Adeyeye stated.
She gave some of the processes and procedures put in place to ease the MSMEs registration processes and services as sharing of facilities for production.
She explained that companies with similar products and limited resources could come together to use common facilities provided the products were similar.
Another was to streamline the agency’s requirements for product registration and this was restricted to a group of products.
The other was decentralised products registration thereby reducing the timeline to 60 days for MSMEs and 90/120 days for other companies.
She, therefore, called on the newly admitted students to concentrate much on their studies in order to be the driving subject the country was yearning for.