• N50 billion soft loans to small businesses
  • N100 billion CBN intervention
  • N1trillion local manufacturing and import substitution intervention

Anticipating a potential crisis, the Central Bank Of Nigeria has asked banks to activate Business Continuity Strategies. These are part of a robust scaling up the response to COVID-19.

Earlier, at The Going for Growth 2.0 Roundtable at the CBN Headquarters in Abuja, the apex bank had examined scenarios with stakeholders on Nigeria’s Growth projections for Year 2020 and beyond which birthed the March 16, 6-point palliatives announced to ameliorate the impact of the disease on the economy. Coming on the heels of the dire state of oil revenues at $25 per barrel and in the near term.

In a statement signed by the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, “the CBN is directing all Deposit Money Banks to increase their support to the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. In local drug manufacturing, in increased bed count in hospitals across Nigeria, in funding intensive care as well as in training, laboratory testing, equipment and R&D. In addition to the N50 billion soft loans to small businesses already announced, the CBN will increase its intervention by another N100 billion in loan this year to support the Health Authorities to ensure laboratories, researchers and innovators work with global scientists to patent and or produce vaccines and test kits In Nigeria to prepare for any major crises ahead. The details of how these facilities can be accessed will be released soon.

Secondly, given the continuing impact of the disease on global supply chains, the CBN will increase its intervention in boosting local manufacturing and import substitution by another N1trillion across all critical sectors of the economy. The management of the CBN will meet with the Bankers Committee this Saturday at 10.00am to work out the modalities.

Thirdly an Implementation Committee that will action the private sector contribution of N1.5trillion Infrastructure funding that will link farming communities to markets as agreed at the Going for Growth Roundtable last week will be set-up next week.

The CBN had set-up the Financial Markets Situation Room to monitor global markets and advise adequate response.

All Deposit Money Banks and other regulated entities in the banking industry are further advised to:

  1. Trigger their business continuity plans to ensure that their staff and families are protected, and their operations remain largely undisrupted.
  2. Adhere strictly to the directives, advice, and notices from the Federal Ministry of Health, National Centre for Disease Control and other relevant government agencies on national response measures to COVID-19
  3. Ensure regular and appropriate sanitization of their premises and make available in all their locations adequate sanitization materials.
  4. Discourage large gatherings of staff and customers
  5. Ensure constant communication with and sensitization of their staff and families on the COVID-19 infection.

Finally, the CBN will continue to monitor all developments on the COVID – 19 infection and design appropriate Monetary response to protect the people and economy of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and indeed turn this adversity into opportunity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *