In a bid to achieve self-sufficiency in food production and save hard earned foreign exchange, the Central Bank of Nigeria has revealed that it disbursed a total of N1.49 trillion to agricultural led interventions as of the end of February, 2021.
This is according to a disclosure contained in the communiqué issued by the apex bank and seen by NaijaBusiness.com.ng
The apex bank disclosed that it disbursed the sum of N686.6 billion under the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS), and ₦601.8 billion under the Anchor Borrowers Program (ABP) to 3,038,649 farmers to support food supply and dampen inflationary pressures. Further breakdown showed that bank allocated N218.16 billion to 475,376 beneficiaries under its Targeted Credit Facility.
Most recently, between Q4 2020 and Q1 2021, the bank disclosed that it spent a total of N107.6 billion to 548,109 farmers cultivating 703,619 hectares of land, in a bid to support the agricultural value chain development.
Recall that the Central Bank of Nigeria had earlier reiterated its commitments to supporting the Federal Government of Nigeria’s drive to develop the agricultural sector and boost food production. In a bid to provide policy support, the apex bank placed some food items under FX restrictions and deployed all monetary tools to strengthen food production and security in the country.
In addition to developing food production, the disbursement was also a strategic means of cushioning the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the income and production of small scale farmers. For example, the communiqué revealed that 34% of the 475,376 TCF beneficiaries during the aforementioned period are SMEs. Other disbursements by the apex bank include;
- A total of N111.6 billion was disbursed to 28,961 beneficiaries under the AGSMEIS, of which 70 percent are in the agricultural sector.
- A total of N3.19 billion was disbursed to 341 beneficiaries under the Creative Industry Financing Initiatives mainly targeted at youths.
- A sum of N33.45 billion was disbursed to 9 distribution companies under the National Mass Metering Programme. The disbursement was to enable the firms procure 605,852 meters.
- In addition, a total of 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.
- The bank also disbursed a total of N94.3 billion out of its N100 billion Health Care Intervention Fund.
Finally, a total of N803.36 billion has been disbursed to 228 projects under the N1trillion Manufacturing Intervention Stimulus.