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Niger SMEs to get Khalifa Fund support

The initiative aims to build strong business relationship between UAE and Nigeria. (Image source: Adobe Stock)

Mahamadou Issoufou, President of Niger, met with Hussain Jasim Al Nowais, chairman of the UAE-based Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, in the Capital Niamey to discuss growing relations and strong cooperation between the two countries in various fields

During the visit, Al Nowais and Saadou Sidou, minister of trade and private sector development in Nigerien, signed a US$25mn agreement to provide support for micro, small- and medium-sized enterprises in Niger, where the amount will be distributed in equal instalments.

On behalf of Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Al Nowais wished continued progress and prosperity for Niger and its people. Crown Prince Al Nahyan had assigned Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development to establish similar programmes to support entrepreneurship with an aim to develop small and medium enterprises in other parts of the world, including Niger.

Al Nowais further stated that the agreement will help Niger in its economic development efforts towards promoting a culture of entrepreneurship and supporting SME.

He further stressed that the agreement will provide creative and innovative young people in Niger with an opportunity to use their skills and talents to improve their lives and contribute to the country?s economic growth.

Sidou emphasised on the positive impact of such major agreements on the country?s development that lead to major projects and generate new jobs for Niger?s citizens, thereby helping achieve comprehensive growth for the country and reduce poverty.

The Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, which was established in 2007 in Abu Dhabi, has become one of the leading institutions aimed at instilling a culture of entrepreneurship and supporting SMEs in the UAE. The fund has financed more than 1,400 projects within the country. Apart from the UAE, it has extended services to Egypt, Chechnya, Jordan and Belarus, Mali and Mauritania to achieve sustainable development and build a diversified and stable economy.