The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) has reached an agreement with HASAL Micro-Finance Bank for the disbursement of N12 million to three cooperative societies in Enugu State.
The tripartite deal will ensure the implementation of the “One Local Government Area, One Product (OLOP)” scheme.
A statement by the Southeast Zonal Coordinator of SMEDAN,Rev. Levi Anyikwa said the three cooperatives societies are to get N4 million each as financial support for workspace, equipment and working capital.
The beneficiaries are: Awgu Zion Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society Ltd based in Isu-Awaa, Awgu Local Government Area (representing Enugu West), CYTHLTHL Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society Ltd based in IMT Industrial Centre in Enugu North Municipal Council (representing Enugu East Senatorial District) and Umunne Farmers Association Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society Ltd based in Enugu-Ezike in Igbo-Eze North LGA (representing Enugu North Senatorial District).
The three cooperatives are into food processing.
The Director-General of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), Dr. Dikko Umaru Radda, who was represented on the occasion by the Project Coordinator, Mr. Bowie Okimba, reminded the beneficiaries that the loan component of the support is a revolving fund and urged them to be faithful in repayment so that the fund would be available to other cooperative societies who would need it.
According to the Director-General, 30 percent of the amount is a grant while 70 comes as interest free loan to be repaid within 18 months after 6 months moratorium.
One Local Government Area, One Product (OLOP) is a programme adopted by SMEDAN for the promoting the development of at least an identifiable product per local government area in Nigeria, the statement added.
It is an adaptation of the Japanese business model called “One Village, One Product (OVOP)”. Each LGA is expected to concentrate more on a product in which it has competitive and comparative advantage. The aim is to add value and advance such identified raw material(s) to a processed, branded and certified product with expanded market (including export) potentials.