CBN Charges Banks On Infrastructure, Education, Agric, SMEs Funding

Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Godwin Emefiele, has challenged deposit money banks on funding growth generating productive sectors in order to achieve self-sufficiency goal and boost domestic productivity.
He sees the need for the industry to set out deliberate and genuine agenda of development financing to fund critical infrastructural projects, education, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), agriculture and manufacturing sectors.
Speaking at the ninth banking and finance conference organised by the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) in Abuja, Emefiele said the CBN was targeting specific productive sectors of the economy that had the capacity to create jobs on a mass scale, reduce the country’s dependence on foreign developments to significantly reduce our huge import bills.
Consequently, the CBN has focused its development financing efforts on key sectors of the economy – power, agriculture, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME), education, among others.
“These sectors were methodically selected, as they are essential for simultaneously achieving the goals of economic growth, job creation, poverty reduction, broader diversification of the economy,” he said.
Debola Osibogun, president/chairman of Council, CIBN, said “the banking industry has pursued financial inclusion meticulously with the development and introduction of various products and services under the retail banking space,” adding that credits from banks and other financial institutions played an important role in generating growth and reducing poverty.
The ongoing implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) is a welcomed initiative, as it will help to cut down the several inconsistencies that have marred public sector fund management in the recent past, she said.
However, she appealed to the CBN to reconsider the 31 percent of Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) imposed on deposits. Also, the CBN should look at creative ways through which the sterile public sector fund under the two initiatives would be managed to create development, especially in the critical sectors of the economy, she said.

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