Minister Reveals FG’s Plan To Establish Youth Banks

Sunday Dare, Minister of Youth and Sports Development has announced the government’s plan to make National Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) to become youth banks.

The minister revealed this on Thursday while speaking at the 51st session of the State House Ministerial Briefing organised by the Presidential Communications Team at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

According to him, once the Federal Executive Council authorized the need for the establishment of youth banks, it would deal with lack of access to finance and credit and the dearth of entrepreneurship among youth, thereby giving them the opportunity to achieve their targets.

Dare said the goal behind the scheme was the realization of entrepreneurship which is crucial to youth development.

“The entire N75bn approved by Mr. President for NYF is for entrepreneurship, you have an idea, you have a skill, that money is going to support you. It might be small.

“What is the final bus stop for us when it comes to youth development, our plan is that we can get the Youth Investment Fund to become youth bank, we want to make sure that this administration will be the first administration ever to have youth banks. Imagine when our youth can walk in with their portfolio to their own banks.” he said.

Dare added that over 31,000 youths had so far benefitted from National Youth Investment Fund.

According to him, the loan was approved for 45,000 beneficiaries for youth development but only 31,000 accepted the money ranging from N250,000 to N3m based on the idea of the business proposal forwarded by the applicants.

He said the money disbursed was from N10bn released of the NYIF N25bn expected for the first year.

Speaking on digital training, he said his ministry in partnership with Halogen had 6000 of 61,000 youth who applied for cyber security training, stating that the graduates would get their certification.

He clarified that training of all 61,000 applicants would be taken in batches because of “cost implication”.

The outcome of a research conducted revealed that the problem of skills mismatch was making it difficult for youth to get available jobs, he stated.

“There are jobs out there for our youth, but the degrees they have cannot fit in for those jobs. And we found out that the jobs available in cyber security in Africa alone are 1.5 million jobs. In this country alone, more than 350,000, that is their organizations looking for a cyber-security expert certified.

“Of the 120 digital skills, we have decided on 15 of those digital skills that are relevant in our economy. And that you can also out source.” he said.

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