…urges women,youths to key into CBN Intervention Programmes
By Ibrahim HassanWuyo
The Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) has enjoined Nigerians, particularly women and youths, to cue into its bouquet of intervention programmes and take advantage of schemes such as the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme ,even as 3,107,949 small holder farmers have so far benefited from the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme as at April 2021.
Speaking during the CBN Special Day at the ongoing 42nd Kaduna International Trade Fair with the theme: “Promoting Domestic Production to Mitigate the Current Economic Challenges”, the Acting Director, Corporate Communications of CBN, Mr Osita Nwanisobi said the Anchor Borrowers Programme was able to provide intervention facilities to 3,107,949 small holder farmers who cultivated 3.8 million hectares of land.
The Director who was represented by Branch Controller of CBN in Kaduna, Ahmed Mohammed Wali ,said as a responsible and responsive corporate organization ,CBN remained steadfast in promoting domestic production through array of interventions to mitigate current economic challenges in the face of new global realities, “including continued appeal that we produce what we consume and consume what we produce.”
“We therefore enjoin Nigerians, particularly women and youths, to cue into our bouquet of intervention programmes and take advantage of schemes such as the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP), Targeted Credit Facility (TCF),
Commodity Development Initiative (CDI), the Creative Industry Financing Initiative (CIFI), the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises Development Facility (MSMEDF) and the Agric-business/Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS)
Mr Nwanisobi said as part of the Bank’s responses to the pandemic in Nigeria, the CBN approved a one-year extension of moratorium on principal repayments for its intervention facilities; in addition to granting Regulatory Forbearance to banks to restructure loans given to sectors that were severely affected by the pandemic.
He said CBN equally raised the Loan-Deposit Ratio (LDR) from 60 percent to 65 percent, to encourage more lending by banks. The Bank also reduced the interest rate on CBN intervention loans from 9 to 5 percent and initially created a N150 billion Targeted Credit Facility (TCF) for affected households and small medium enterprises through the NIRSAL Microfinance Bank.
“About 29,026 beneficiaries have accessed N111.7 billion under the Agri-business/Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS). Under the National Youth Investment Fund, 7,057 beneficiaries comprising 4,411 individuals and 2,646 SMEs have so far accessed the scheme. The Creativity Industry Financing Initiative (CIFI) has also provided loan facilities for 341 beneficiaries across movie production, movie distribution, music and software development,” he said.
CBN, he said, shall continue to sustain its interventions in the critical sectors of the economy, particularly in Agriculture, Manufacturing, MSMEs, Infrastructure, Creative Industry, Health etc; to stimulate robust economic growth and development of the country.
He said the apex bank was collaborating with the fiscal authority to improve the investment climate towards attracting Foreign Direct Investment ( FDI),knowing that infrastructure was one of the major keys to unlocking the full potential of Nigeria, hence the establishment of the N15trillion Infrastructure Corporation ( InfraCorp) to help in fixing the challenges in Nigeria’s infrastructure.
He , however, assured the public that CBN would sustain efforts towards ensuring availability of Clean Naira Notes ,but urged Nigerians to see Naira as their critical symbol of national identity.
“Respect and keep it clean. Do not counterfeit, hawk ,spray or mutilate the Naira,” he said.