The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has hinted of plans to unveil a Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) to support young graduates in business this year.
The initiative, according to CBN, will target one million young graduates that are entrepreneurs.
The Branch Controller of CBN, Ibadan, Alh Folorunso Olatinwo disclosed this over the weekend at the end of the year party of Ibadan Bankers’ Committee, held in Ibadan, Oyo State capital.
Olatinwo who was represented by CBN, Head of Banking Section, Ibadan, Alh Muhammed Musa said the programme will be completely different from the N220 billion MSMEs development fund that was launched earlier.
He however, appealed to the Deposit Money Banks (DMBs), and other financial institutions to also support the initiative.
“We need to get more and more people to be employed and we will need the support of the banks to begin to see how we can lower our risk acceptance criteria to give support to our young graduates. The nation had entered a phase where it must prioritise MSMEs to grow the economy. SMEs are seen as drivers of growth in an economy.
“I must say that the Nigerian banking sector has not played active part in supporting the SMEs, but this is not without reasons. We had issues in the past where people take loans and fail to pay. CBN had used various approaches to stimulate the lending to SMEs through the fund and I must confess that we are not doing enough on that because less than half fund has been disbursed as at today,” Olatinwo said
The CBN boss said the bank in its efforts to develop a sound and vibrant banking system will continue to rely on the support of the DMBs, urging the Ibadan Bankers’ Committee members to be more supportive and cooperative.
Awards were giving to different banks which include; United Bank for Africa receive the best bank in currency processing activities, Union Bank got the best bank in development finance activities, and FCMB received the bank with the best attendance at the quarterly clearing house committee meetings.