FG secures $5bn Afreximbank funds to boost economy, de-risk business environment

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Nigeria’s federal government says it has secured $5 billion from Afreximbank to strengthen the economy, including a $3 billion targeted at de-risking the economy.

Doris Uzoka-Anite, the minister of industry, trade and investment, revealed this while delivering her address at the Manufacturing Association of Nigeria (MAN) summit, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja Thursday.

“The Ministry secured $5b funds, including a $3b for de-risking Nigeria’s business environment with AFREXIM bank at an event in the Bahamas in June,” the minister said.

Uzoka-Anite who delivered her address at the concluding session of the MAN summit in Abuja, said the government is ready to protect the manufacturing sector in Nigeria.

She traced the current shortage of food in the country to increased export of agricultural produce. She added that the government is ready to help the manufacturing sector to increase productivity, but urged the sector to “self-regulate export of critical agricultural goods”.

“We know that exports have increased in the last year and that is good, but we have also noticed a shortage of food in our country, so we think the manufacturers and exporters should self-regulate exports to avoid another round of border closure to reduce the export of agricultural products,” she said.

The Minister also revealed that the government has attracted $3.5b investment into the automotive sector to ensure cheap, affordable cars further disclosed that the processing of federal government’s N75 billion bail-out funds for the manufacturing sector is being fast-tracked to ensure that the Bank of Industry can begin to disburse the loans.

On the critical issue of patronage of locally made goods, she assured the manufacturers that her Ministry would religiously implement the federal government’s Executive Orders 3 and 5 to promote made-in-Nigeria goods.

“You can rest assured that when it comes to the patronage of made-in-Nigeria goods, I am your number one advocate,” she said.

We know that inflation at 33.9%, is high, but the high interest rate is aimed at bringing down inflation. Ours is moderate and the high interest rate is part of the CBN efforts.

“Reducing interest rates now will lead to policy inconsistency. We have created opportunities for the export of over 3000 different agricultural products as market access increases, for Nigeria’s goods,” she said. “ We shall be launching a $10b diaspora fund to enable MSMEs capital to fund their businesses.