As part of proactive strategies aimed at tackling graduate unemployment across the country, the Federal Government has flagged off the University Entrepreneurship Development Programme to promote self-employment among the youth, right from institutions of higher learning.
The programme will be implemented by the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education with the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment as the co-ordinating ministry.
Speaking at the unveiling of the programme in Abuja, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga, said that the programme would give students the opportunity for practical hands on experience to enable them to successfully manage their own businesses.
In order to address the problem of lack of access to capital, the minister said that the programme would increase access to finance for young entrepreneurs by exposing them to investors that would fund their businesses.
Mr Aganga added that the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment would collaborate with other stakeholders to achieve this objective.
The Minister of Education, Professor Ruqayyatu Rufai, said there was a need for the country to promote the culture of entrepreneurship among students in order to reduce unemployment and achieve sustainable economic growth and development.