The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has disbursed N1.487 trillion under its various agricultural programmes to boost food security. The CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, made this known while presenting the communiqué on the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting held on Monday and Tuesday in Abuja.
Emefiele said that the apex bank disbursed N107.60 billion to 548,109 farmers cultivating 703,619 hectares of land between the fourth quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021 to boost dry season output. He said, “total disbursements as at end-February 2021 amounted to N1.487 trillion under the various agricultural programmes, of which N686.59 billion was disbursed under the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS).
“The bank also disbursed N601.75 billion under the Anchor Borrowers Programmes (ABP) to 3,038,649 farmers to support food supply and dampen inflationary pressures. “Under the Targeted Credit Facility, the bank has disbursed N218.16 billion to 475,376 beneficiaries, of which 34 per cent of beneficiaries are SMEs. [ALSO READ] Bill limiting tenure of EFCC acting chair to 6 months, own 0.05% of recovered loot passes second reading “Under the Agri-Business/Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS), N111.62 billion has been disbursed to 28,961 beneficiaries, 70 per cent of which are in the agricultural sector.’’
The governor said that the CBN had also made huge investment in youth development through the creative industry, efforts to boost electricity supply as well as health financing.
“Under the Creative Industry Financing Initiatives mainly targeted at youth, N3.19 billion has been disbursed to 341 beneficiaries, of which 53 per cent is to the movie industry. “Under the National Mass Metering Programme, N33.45 billion has been disbursed to nine distribution companies for the procurement of 605,852 meters. “N89.89 billion has been disbursed under the Nigeria Electricity Market Stabilisation Facility (NEMSF 2) to 11 distribution companies to improve the electricity supply industry in Nigeria.
“Under the N100 billion Health Care Intervention Fund; the bank has disbursed N94.34 billion, and is willing to expand the facility, to 85 projects in the pharmaceutical industry. “It is mostly to expand pharmaceutical drug lines, acquire six MRI and other equipment and upgrade laboratories and other hospital services,’’ he said.
Emefiele said that the apex bank also disbursed N803.36 billion to 228 projects across various sectors in agro-allied, mining, steel production and packaging industries under the N1.0 trillion Manufacturing Intervention Stimulus.