By Chika Otuchikere
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele has revealed that the apex bank has, so far, made a total of N3.5 trillion disbursements to cushion the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on the country’s economy.
Emefiele’s assertion was contained in a review of the 132nd communiqué of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting made available on the apex bank’s website, and signed by its Governor.
According to him, interventions were largely in the areas of manufacturing, agriculture, electricity and gas, solar power and housing constructions among others.
“Recent interventions are largely in the areas of manufacturing, agriculture, electricity and gas, solar power and housing constructions among others.
“Real sector funds, (N216.87 billion); COVID-19 Targeted Credit Facility (TCF), (N73.69 billion); AGSMEIS, (N54.66 billion); Pharmaceutical and Health Care Support Fund, (N44.47 billion); and Creative Industry Financing Initiative (N2.93 billion).
“Under the Real Sector Funds, a total of 87 projects that included 53 Manufacturing, 21 Agriculture and 13 Services projects were funded.
“In the Health Care sector, 41 projects which included 16 pharmaceuticals and 25 hospital and health care services are funded. Under the Targeted Credit Facility, 120,074 applicants have received financial support for investment capital.
“The Agri-Business/Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS) intervention has been extended to a total of 14,638 applicants, while 250 SME businesses, predominantly the youths, have benefited from the Creative Industry Financing Initiative,’’ he said.
Emefiele added that, the CBN was also set to contribute over N1.8 trillion of the total sum of N2.30 trillion needed for the Federal Government’s one-year Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP).
He noted that the bank’s policy on loan to deposit ratio also resulted in a significant growth in credit to various sectors from N15.57 trillion to N19.33 trillion between May 2019 and August 2020.
“This growth in credit was mainly to manufacturing (N866.27 billion), consumer credit (N527.65 billion), oil and gas (N477.65 billion), agriculture (N287.11 billion) and construction (N270.97 billion),’’ he said.