The Ministry of Youths and Sports Development on Thursday held its first ever technical session on sports industry development in conjunction with the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG).
The summit with the theme “Positioning Sports as an Industry – From Concept to Action” was held at the NESG Liaison Office in Abuja had the ministries of Education; Women Affairs; Health; Finance; Works and Housing; and Information and Culture as participating ministries.
Others are Communication and Digital Economy, Science and Technology; Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.
In his speech, the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare revealed plans are in motion to turn Sports into a viable business that will create jobs and generate revenue.
“I think personally the country is about to turn the cusp when it comes to sports. First about the contribution of sports to national life, development and also to youth development.
“More importantly, sports as a viable business. I think if you ask me, 20, 25 years back, several countries have started racking in millions of dollars from sport. We have moved from almost zero to 50,” he said.
He said the Ministry’s desire was to pursue the set targets vigorously in line with the declaration in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
“Commendable progress has been made in this regard as we have now thought it necessary to move to the next phase of sharing this vision and to solicit the cooperation and buy-in of sister agencies as a prelude to a launch to the larger private sector groups”, Mr. Dare disclosed.
While highlighting the importance of Private sector partnerships with the Public sector in tapping into the business potentials of the Sports Sector, he stressed the need for a framework for tapping into the business potentials of sports development and its commercialization, which will be provided by a National Sports Policy.
“It is imperative that the National Sports Policy Document is tailored to reach mutual understanding, vision, policy and targets in the field of sports.
“It will also provide coordination and cooperation in the services and activities of the relevant public institutions, organizations and non-governmental organizations as well as other stakeholders.”
“The proposed Policy is a roadmap towards the achievement of national development goals related to healthy living, economic growth and sustainability, promotion of equity and excellence, in addition to creating wealth and employment for the citizenry.
“This process involves robust national consultations that have identified national development priorities as well as global development trends and best practice models,” he said.