National Bureau of Statistics NBS

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), has put the quantum of jobs created by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) at 59,647,954 jobs as of December 2017, stressing that five per cent or 2,889,715 of those jobs were created by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

According to the report of a survey by the Bureau, the male gender accounted for 57 per cent of jobs created by SMEs, compared to 43 per cent for women.

Whereas more males were employed in total —-both in micro and small/medium enterprises—-there was greater disparity amongst employees, within SMEs.

The survey, however, noted that education sector is the only sector with gender parity in jobs (53 per cent women) and manufacturing employs three times more males than females.

But it said that only 34 per cent of micro enterprises said they could find ready availability of qualified personnel while 77.1 per cent of small and medium enterprises say there is availability of qualified personnel.

For small and medium enterprises, sectors that require specialised skills and technical know-how suffer from high skills shortage. Micro enterprises find the highest skills shortage in sectors that are consumer facing, with the exception of manufacturing which also requires specialised skills. Accommodation and Food Services are both severely short- skilled for both business classifications” NBS, said.

The survey listed the challenges of the business to include, vulnerability to economic shocks, excessive regulation, complex and cumbersome tax process and skills acquisition for youth population.

Conversely, key benefits of the jobs created by the sector within the period include, improved income re-distribution (low level capital required), increased job creation and skills development (particularly for youth, women, elderly); increased adoption of technology and innovation (competitiveness); industrial diversification and stimulatation of local economy (demand down the value chain).

Micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) play a significant role as the engine for economic transformation and industrialisation for both developed and developing countries” the survey also stated.

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