Agri-businesses, MSMEs to get CBN's interest-free loans

Agri-businesses, MSMEs to get CBN's interest-free loans

- As COVID-19 continues to affect the Nigerian economy, the CBN is doing its best to cushion the effects of the pandemic

- The apex bank has unveiled new policy guidelines that will benefit small businesses

- Small businesses are set to enjoy more access to affordable and sustainable finance from the CBN

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Agri-businesses and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are set to enjoy more access to affordable and sustainable finance from the Central Bank of Nigeria.

This is as the apex bank has unveiled its new policy guidelines for Non-Interest Financial Institutions (NIFIs) under its Agri-Business, Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS) and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSMEDF).

In the guidelines unveiled on Tuesday, July 14, financing under the scheme will also be for start-ups, business expansion or revival of ailing companies.

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The 10 guidelines included the Accelerated Agricultural Development Scheme (AADS) and seven other intervention schemes in its bouquet.

Agri-businesses, MSMEs to get CBN's interest-free loans
File photo of Nigeria's Central Bank governor, Godwin Emefiele. Photo credit: Presidency
Source: Twitter

The CBN had announced plans to integrate non-interest windows in its intervention programmes to support businesses and households negatively impacted by COVID-19.

The guidelines stipulated that each non-interest deposit bank (full-fledged or window) was to set aside five per cent of its Profit After Tax (PAT) annually as contribution to the Fund.

There is also the Real Sector Support Facility (RSSF) revised guidelines (V3); and the Real Sector Support Facility (RSSF).

Speaking to Daily Trust on the move, the national president of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Architect Kabiru Ibrahim said the initiative will be a welcome development if properly implemented.

He advised the CBN to identify real young farmers to avoid a hijack of the process adding that the apex bank and the implementing partners should work with commodities associations that have the detailed data and acreage of real farmers and their farm locations.

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Meanwhile, the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) has called for an overhaul of Nigeria's tax system for efficiency in the country's public finance management.

The move, CISLAC, noted, will strengthen Nigeria's tax administration system with the view to expanding the tax base of the country as well as expanding the revenue scope to bring more taxable people and businesses into the tax net.

CISLAC's programme manager, Chinedu Bassey stated this at a one-day stakeholders media dialogue focused on policy gaps om fiscal transparency and alternatives under the Oxfam’s global strategic partnership programme on Thursday, July 9 in Abuja.

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