Focusing on financing for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), The Bank of Industry (BoI) declared it will assist SMEs with N376 billion before the end of 2019.
The information was made known by the BoI Acting Managing Director, Waheed Olagunju, at a management retreat for officers of the ministry and its parastatal agencies in Makurdi where he presented a paper captioned: “Target Financing for SMEs’’.
The theme of the conference was, “Implementing the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) through Industry, Trade and Investment’’.
Olagunju stated that disbursement to SMEs rose from a record of N5.64 billion in 2015 to N8.02 billion as at end of 2016, even as they are targeting N376 billion for 2019.
Olagunju added that the bank had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Afterschool Graduate Development Centre. According to Olagunju, the scheme would provide between N200,000 to N500,000 to empower about one million youths within the next five years.
The BoI boss said the bank had also lent N5 billion to micro-finance banks for financing of micro-loans:
“About N4.5 billion has been disbursed to micro-finance banks and over 15,000 micro-enterprises have benefitted from this scheme,’’ he explained.
Continuing, Olagunju declared that 44 key business clusters had been identified across the country with products developed, considering peculiarities as SMEs’ Credit group was established to ensure effective turnaround period in reviewing credit.
The BoI boss informed that the bank had also disbursed N1.48 billion to market associations and co-operatives, including developing strategic alliances with Micro Finance Banks (MFBs) and Mobile Money operators to ease effective disbursement; adding that the bank has identified a number of vital sources towards enhancing its lending capacity, (thecitizenng.com).
A good opening for SMEs if you asked me, but it’s one thing to have useful information and another, to maximize the information you have. For the SMEs and prospective business owners, you must make the right research, be at the right place at the right time and for the right purpose, and also ask the right questions, so you can get the right assistance. The time to think and act is now; these are life and business essentials, so let’s keep thinking clearly! Thank you for reading and do have a beautiful day!
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