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Nigeria Central Bank Covid-19 Interventions Hit N3.5 trillion

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Total disbursements by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic amount to N3.5 trillion ($9 billion). This was disclosed in a communique following the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), which met on Monday 21st and Tuesday 22nd September 2020.

A breakdown of the interventions includes: 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 include 53 Manufacturing, 21 Agriculture and 13 Services projects were funded.

In the Health Care sector, 41 projects which include 16 pharmaceuticals and 25 hospital and health care services were 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.

In addition to these initiatives, the CBN is set to contribute over N1.8 trillion of the total sum of N2.30 trillion needed for the Federal Government’s 1-year Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP), through its various financing interventions using the channels of Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs).

“The MPC is, thus, using this medium to appeal to our important economic stakeholders to take advantage of these intervention initiatives to help support a quick rebound in growth,” the statement said.

Available data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contracted by 6.10 per cent in the second quarter of 2020 compared with expansions of 1.87 and 2.12 per cent in the preceding quarter of 2020 and the corresponding period of 2019, respectively.

The development ended, the three-year trend of low but positive real GDP growth recorded in Nigeria since the end of the 2016/17 recession.

The CBN’s policy on Loan to Deposit ratio also resulted in a significant growth in credit to various sectors to N19.33 trillion at the end of August 2020, from N15.57 trillion in May 2019.

The 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).

The Committee also noted the decrease in the NPLs ratio to 6.1 per cent at the end of August 2020 compared with 9.4 per cent in the corresponding period of 2019 due largely to recoveries, write offs and disposals.


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