CBN disburses N948b under anchor borrowers programme
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has restated its determination to continue to support the growth of various sectors of the economy, saying it has in the past seven years disbursed N948 billion to 4,478, 381 small-holder farmers under the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) nationwide.
Director, Corporate Communications Department of the CBN, Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, who stated this, at the weekend, in Enugu during the ongoing Enugu International Trade Fair, said the disbursement was part of efforts to boost agricultural production, halt large volumes of food importation and address negative trade balance.
He stated that the small-holder farmers who benefited from the scheme cultivated 5.2 million hectares of farmland across the country, thereby creating over 12.5 million direct and indirect jobs.
Nwanisobi further said that the bank, under its targeted credit facility designed to cushion the effect of the coronavirus pandemic, had disbursed N368.79 billion to 778,000 beneficiaries.
The beneficiaries, according to him, comprised 648,052 households and about 130, 000 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
He said: “Specifically, the bank disbursed N1.452 trillion to 337 large real sector projects in agriculture, manufacturing, services and mining under Real Sector Support Facility (RSSF).”
He added that the bank also disbursed N8.5 billion to six healthcare projects under the Healthcare Sector Intervention Facility (HSIF), bringing the cumulative disbursements to N116.72 billion in 124 projects, comprising 31 pharmaceuticals, 56 hospitals and 37 health-related services.
This, he said, was aside from N14.7 million disbursed to five researchers under the Healthcare Sector Research and Development (HSRD) grant.
Nwanisobi said that the CBN did it through its developmental role as enshrined in the CBN Act 2007 (as amended) led policy and financing support to about 40 interventions.
He said that the interventions were executed through the bank’s development finance initiatives.
He mentioned some of the initiatives to include the Agri-business/Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme and the Non-oil Export Stimulation Facility among others.
Earlier, President, Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA), Mr. Jasper Nduagwuike, applauded the CBN for its various intervention efforts.