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Bankers Committee to disburse N26bn equity fund to Agric SMEs

By Amaka Ifeakandu

Lagos —

The Bankers Committee has set aside N26 billion equity fund for investment in Agric Small and Medium  Enterprises (SMEs).
The Bankers comittee is comprises of the Central Bank of Nigeria and  Chief executive of banks in Nigeria.
Addressing financial Journalist after the bankers committee meeting yesterday in Lagos, Managing Director /Chief Executive Officer of Unity Bank,  Tomi Somefun  said that equity fund would start disbursing  in the last quarter of this year.
She, however, explained that the fund is not a loan but equity fund, adding that the framework for the fund has been developed and it would soon be out.
She further said that the special export investment Scheme initiated by the CBN was designed to support exporters to export their goods to other countries.
The initiative was also set to boost export in the country and ensure that exporters can access funds to increase production.
Somefun said that exporters are expected to repatriate their proceeds,   stressing that the failure to do so would attract sanction.
She said that defaulters would also be blacklisted from doing business with banks in the country.
Also speaking,  the Director,  Banking Supervision, Ahmed Abdullahi said that  although Nigeria  is out of recession, the growth is still fragile at 0.
5 per cent.
He said that there was need for hard work to deepen the nation’ s economy .
He said that apart from stability in the foreign exchange market,  there is moderation in the inflation rate.
The Managing Director, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc,  Emeka Emuwa said that the establishment of collateral registry will help to unlock access to credit by Micro Small and Medium Enterprises in Nigeria.
He said that since the process has started, this would help small business to access loan and grow their businesses.
Managing Director, FBN Merchant Bank,  Kayode Akinkugbe said that Bankers committee commended the CBN on its efforts to stabilise forex market and increase liquidity in the foreign exchange market.
According to him,  CBN has been steadfast in supplying dollar in forex market and this has improve confidence in the market.

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