NEPC lauds FCMB for supporting export initiatives
The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has commended First City Monument Bank (FCMB) for executing initiatives that drive export trade, particularly non-oil exports in the country.
The action of the bank, according to the stakeholders, has gone a long way to impact positively on the various initiatives of the Federal Government to diversify and develop the nation’s economy in a sustainable manner.
The Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer of NEPC, Olusegun Awolowo, said this when exporters and other stakeholders attended the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between FCMB and NEPC on export development, recently in Abuja.
The ceremony also provided an opportunity for the bank and the council to further engage and build the capacity of exporters on new and emerging developments in the segment.
According to the bank, it was the fifth consecutive year that FCMB has organised such forum in partnership with a Federal Government agency.
Awolowo, who was represented by the Director, Policy and Strategy of NEPC, Alhaji Abdullahi Aliyu, said: “FCMB has demonstrated commitment and support towards the promotion of non-oil exports. We believe that through the MoU, this partnership will be sustained.
“This singular action of FCMB would also go a long way to address the age long challenge of access to finance that had been a nightmare to Nigerian exporters.”
He urged exporters to take advantage of the numerous opportunities offered by the NEPC and FCMB to grow their businesses, adding that NEPC is doing its best through schemes such as the Export Expansion Grant and Export Development Fund.
The Regional Head, Abuja and North of FCMB, Lukman Mustapha, said the bank is focused on empowering customers and other stakeholders involved in export trade.
“Our partnership with the NEPC and other sister agencies is a proof of our commitment to go the extra mile to add value to the operational capabilities of our customers.
“This also goes to further demonstrate how much we value their patronage and to inform the Market that we are seriously prepared to support the government and businesses in their efforts towards driving and growing export trade to boost non-oil revenue in Nigeria in a sustainable manner,” he stated.
An exporter and Managing Director of Bakik and Sons Limited, Alhaji Shaibu Bakki, urged financial institutions to take a critical look at the issue of funding export trade, with particular emphasis on the timing of the disbursement of loans to meet the farming season.
According to him, each product has its life cycle in terms of planting and harvesting season and banks should endeavour to provide loans at the appropriate time when farmers and exporters of non-oil products need such credits.
He, however, expressed gratitude to FCMB and NEPC for signing the MoU to promote export trade, which he said “shows that both organisations are serious about supporting export trade, the diversification of the economy and the overall economic development.”