The Consul General, US Consulate in Lagos, Ms. Claire Pierangelo has talked about the importance of Nigeria’s businessowners to the persistent growth of economies in the West African sub-region and for Africa’s prosperity.
Ms. Claire, who revealed this at a 1-day capacity-building seminar for the first cohort of US-sponsored Tony Elumelu Foundation alumni, also said that the population trends in Nigeria have shown that the country could be the world’s 3rd most populous country by 2050.
She added that the US is very interested in supporting entrepreneurship in Nigeria.
Her words, “If Nigeria is successful, its extremely young population will represent a tremendous source of productive labor and an extremely attractive market for a variety of products and services. Its success will be Africa’s success and the world will also benefit from the creativity and resourcefulness of its people.”
“That is why the government of the United States cares so deeply about supporting entrepreneurship in Nigeria. Right now, according to sources, small to medium sized enterprises run by entrepreneurs create about eighty –five percent of all jobs in this country. We are therefore committed to working with you and our local partners, including the Tony Elumelu Foundation, to help you maximize opportunities to use your drive and skills to create a better Nigeria for all of us.”
Chief Executive Officer of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, Ms. Ifeanyinwa Ugochukwu, also said, “It is clear that development aid does not solve economic problems, handouts never work in the long-term and in no developed country does government shoulder economic burdens alone. On the other hand, partnerships such as this, support the job-creating, solution-driven mentality which Nigeria needs to lift itself up.”