Former Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, has called for the creation of a N500billion Venture Capital Fund, to support entrepreneurship in Nigeria, to boost the economy.
He made the call at the inaugural summit of the Kingsley Moghalu Youth Initiative Summit, held on Tuesday at the Aminu Kano Centre for Democratic Research and Development.
Such funds manage the money of investors seeking private equity stakes in startup and small-to medium-sized enterprises with strong growth potential, and are generally characterised as high-risk/high-return opportunities.
Venture capital is sourced from a pool from Pension funds, insurance companies, and wealthy individuals, who invest in real estate, stocks, and other assets, and allocate up to 10 per cent of their money into riskier investments with higher returns.
Themed, ‘The Role of Nigerian Youths in the Quest for Political and Economic Transformation’, the summit was held in collaboration with Towards An Intellectual Tomorrow Initiative, a youth group in Nigeria, with focus on driving youth participation in governance, policy formulation and economic transformation.
The former CBN boss emphasized the importance of support and funding for small and medium scale businesses, thereby creating a platform for innovation and creativity that can impact the economy.
“Nigeria cannot keep investing in meaningless policies and economic diversification that cannot be sustained. To boost real growth and GDP that reflects a productive economy, the leaders can change the lives of the average Nigerian by investing in ideas and projects that are productive and can create jobs for others,” he said.
Moghalu, also the Founder, Institute for Governance and Economic Transformation, explained that the Venture Capital Fund has to be independent, and should be managed through a public-private partnership.
“Such fund has to be kept away from politics, and should not be subjected to the Federal Character or else the initiative is going to fail. Investment through the fund should be based on merit and business ideas can compete globally and boost the economy,” he stated.
While calling for Nigerian youths to get involved in the 2019 elections through voters’ registration, he denounced the slow rate of socio-economic development, and rising debt profile of the country, saying it is time for Nigerians to elect experienced, competent and fresh leaders with a global vision.