The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) says it has registered more than 245,000 Small and Medium Enterprises businesses free of charge.

This was revealed by the Registrar-General of the Commission, Alhaji Garba Abubakar, while addressing the press in Abuja today.

According to Abubakar, the exercise was done based on the approval obtained from the Federal Government of Nigeria. He explained that the Federal Government paid 50 percent of the cost of registration to CAC and more than 245,000 business names were consequently registered.

Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government, had approved the free registration of 250,000 business names as part of its intervention to assuage the economic effect of COVID-19.

Abubakar further explained that the process was electronic and applicants also got their certificates electronically. He said that the numbers were divided between the 36 states of the federation and the FCT noting that Lagos, Abia and Kano States had the largest numbers.

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He said free registration of 6, 606 business names were approved for 33 states while Abia, Lagos and Kano States would have 7, 906, 9,084 and 8,406 respectively.

Abubakar noted that aggregators were appointed and paid to collect SMEs information and submit same to CAC.

He explained that the commission provided special access for the aggregators for effective service delivery since they were responsible for scanning and uploading of documents.

He added that CAC had to take over from one of the aggregators appointed for two states but failed to deliver.

Abubakar also stated that the intervention of CAC and appointment of substitute aggregators to take over in the two states sped up the process, already nearing completion. “We are hoping that by end of September the exercise will come to an end,’’ he added.