FG, France sign pact to support young entrepreneurs, boost employment

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Pic 8. From left: French Ambassador to Nigeria, Emmanuelle Blatmann; French Envoy, Catherine Colonna; President Bola Tinubu and Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila during the visit of the French Envoy to the Presidential Villa in Abuja on Friday (3/11/23)
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The federal government Friday signed an agreement with France on the Digital and Creative Enterprise (I-DISE) programme aimed at promoting employment opportunities in Nigeria.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Tuggar, and the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs of the Republic of France, Catherine Colonnade, signed the bilateral agreement at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Abuja on behalf of both countries.

The agreement was also witnessed by the Minister of Communications, Bosun Tijani, who represented the Vice President of Nigeria, Kashim Shettima.

Tuggar said the I-DICE programme was an initiative of the Federal Government of Nigeria, spearheaded by the Office of the Vice President, aimed at promoting entrepreneurship and innovation in the digital technology and creative industry sectors.

Tuggar said the programme was being financed by the French Development Agency (AFD), the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Islamic Development Bank (ISDB) & the Bank of Industry (BoI).

He said of the $600 million value of I-DICE, the AFD is contributing 100 million Euros (equivalent to $116 million).

Colonnade thanked all the partners and co-financiers including the l’Agence Française de Développement, bien sûr.

She said the purpose of “this ambitious programme is to support young entrepreneurs and innovators.”

“Those digital technology and creative industries have indeed enormous potential to create jobs and spur economic growth in Nigeria.

“We are very pleased that the French Agency for Development is stepping into these sectors, enabling us to significantly scale up our actions through the I-DICE programme,” she said.

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