By Yinka Kolawole
THE Bank of Industry (BoI) has disbursed about N3.5 billion to business men and women in Osun State, in fulfillment of part of its mandate to develop small and medium enterprises in the country.
Managing Director of BoI, Mr Kayode Pitan, disclosed this at the Osun State Business Summit held in Osogbo, the state capital. He explained that the focus of the bank is to ensure that accessibility to loans becomes easier and faster for the purpose of enhancing and sustaining small businesses in Nigeria.
Pitan identified high interest rate as the bane of SMEs in Nigeria, pledging that the bank is engaging platforms aimed at providing soft loans to business men and women at an affordable interest rate.
“We are doing everything possible to reduce the adverse effect of high interest rate on small and medium enterprises by partnering with some micro-finance banks who could give loans at affordable rates to our business men and women. I want to assure everyone that BOI is open for serious business,” he said.
In his remark, the state’s Commissioner for Commerce, Investment and Cooperative, Mr. Ismail Alagbada, reiterated the commitment of the state government to the advancement of SMEs sector.
“SMEs remain the cornerstone of industrial revolution anywhere in the world. That is why we make the development of the sector a great priority in our 6-points integral plans. Without small industries, there cannot be big industries. It is small and medium enterprises that metamorphose to big ones,” Alagbada stated.
Chairman of Nigeria Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME), Osun chapter, Mr Femi Ayedun, appealed to the government to ensure speedy perfection of land titles for the purpose of accessing loans, adding that Certificate of Occupancy is a key requirement by banks and finance houses for loan processing.