The federal government has taken a step towards creating one million jobs for the nation’s youth through a new initiative backed by Microsoft, known as the National Talent Export Programme (NATEP), designed to source and export Nigerian talents.
The Minister of Industry, Trade, and Investment, Dr. Doris Uzoka-Anite, presided over the official launch of the initiative at the Microsoft Office, 122 5th Avenue, New York, on Friday, as part of the sideline activities of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
Speaking at the occasion, which also attracted experts from global tech giants such as Meta, Google, and Amazon, she said that though the programme is vital to Nigeria, other countries will eventually enjoy the benefits.
She noted: “The Nigerian government, under the leadership of President Bala Tinubu as part of the renewed hope agenda, is committed to diversifying the economy and creating sustainable employment opportunities, especially for youth, by creating 50 million jobs.
“This is in tandem with the theme of this year’s UNGA: rebuilding trust and igniting global solidarity, accelerating action on the 2030 agenda, and the sustainable development goals towards peace, prosperity, progress, and sustainability for all.
“As part of our strategy towards achieving this, His Excellency President Bala Tinubu, whose agenda is job creation, has initiated a national talent export programme for Nigeria, which targets the creation of 1 million jobs across Nigeria over a five-year period.
“NATEP is a key national initiative that will serve as a special-purpose vehicle to position Nigeria as a leading global hub for service exports, talent sourcing, and talent exports.
“NATEP will serve as a dedicated entity to address the unique needs and challenges faced by talent and the service export industry.
“The programme will lay special emphasis on enhancing competitiveness, fostering innovation, and driving sustainable growth through trade and services.”
While observing that the global talent-sourcing industry was valued at $620 billion in 2020 and is forecast to be valued at $904 billion by 2027, Anite stated that with a youthful population and over 1.7 million graduates from higher educational institutions joining the workforce each year, Nigeria has the potential to provide high-quality talents for the global service export and outsourcing industry.
She added: “As a country, we have a significant value proposition for regional and global markets for the export of services.