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Financial Services

CBN to increase loans to agricultural sector to 10% of total bank credit

The CBN continues with its support for the agricultural sector.

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CBN to increase loans to agricultural sector to 10% of total bank credit, Agritech, Efficient Power: Addressing a Critical Element in Nigeria’s Agro-Industrial Revolution

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has revealed that the country needs to increase its level of bank credit to the agricultural sector by over 50% within the next 4 years to boost food production.

The implementation of this is expected to drive the allocation to the sector to 10% of the entire credit in the banking sector from the current 4%.

READ: Fitch says Nigerian banks have a risk indicator of 12.14, explains why

This disclosure was made by the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, on Tuesday, September 15, 2020, at the 13th Annual Banking and Finance Conference, organized by the Chartered Institute of Bankers (CIBN) in Abuja.

Emefiele said that the banking sector should focus on increasing its support for the agricultural sector, as the coronavirus pandemic has caused disruptions on global supply chains and food supply from other countries.

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The CBN boss stated that some of the opportunities in the agricultural sector that banks should explore include addressing some of the existing gaps in the agriculture value chain like storage centres, transport logistics and technology platforms, that can enable rural farmers to sell their produce directly to the markets.

READ: Explained: CBN’s powers to seize bank account of criminals

Emefiele also disclosed to bankers that currently, loans to the food sector accounts for around 4% of the total credit in the banking sector. He said the pandemic had exposed the risk of relying on food and drug imports, as most countries are reluctant to export goods to other countries.

Nairametrics had reported on President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive to CBN not to allocate foreign exchange for food and fertilizer imports. He said the Federal Government would rather empower more local farmers and use agriculture as a means to create more employment among Nigerians.

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READ: Consortium of Western investors to inject upwards of $5 billion in Nigeria’s renewable energy sector

Nigeria is reliant on imports, including food items, to meet its needs due to limited manufacturing capacity. It has been struggling to reduce its $20 billion annual food import bill as it finds it difficult to diversify the economy away from oil.

Emefiele told bankers that currently, loans to the food sector accounts for around 4% of the total credit in the banking sector.

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Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Chyke Umegbolu

    September 17, 2020 at 2:58 pm

    Please how do we farmers access this grant or loan to help us in agricultural sector.

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Financial Services

Union Bank Nigeria Plc issues disclaimer against purported sale of owner’s stake

Union Bank has rejected claims that its majority shareholder, Atlas Mara is considering selling its 50% stake.

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Union Bank's statement

The Union Bank of Nigeria Plc has today issued a disclaimer against an unsubstantiated publication by one of Nigeria’s leading online news site, that its principal owner is considering selling its 50% stake in the firm.

The disclaimer was signed by the bank’s secretary, Somuyiwa Sonubi and sent to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, as seen by Nairametrics.

Recall that a few days ago, some online news website had reported that Union Bank’s principal owner, Atlas Mara is considering selling its stake in the firm, after receiving bids from local banks. The report has it that Atlas Mara engaged the services of a financial advisor, Rothschild & Co to consider the deal.

In a bid to shed more light on the issue and allay the fears of stakeholders, Union Bank dismissed the claims, describing it as a mere ‘rumour and speculation’. It went further to advise relevant stakeholders which comprises of the members of the public, its customers, NSE and other regulatory bodies to disregard the speculation in its entirety.

Corroborating the stand maintained by the bank, Atlas Mara also rejected the report. It clarified the issue of contracting external advisers, noting that it was in line with the Board’s decision to explore a wide range of strategic options.

Specta

An excerpt of the disclaimer issued by the firm reads: “While it is the Company’s practice to refrain from comment on market rumours or speculation, we believe it is important to note that Atlas Mara has not received any offers from any local Nigerian bank or other bank wishing to acquire the Company’s stake in Union Bank of Nigeria (“UBN”). As previously announced to the market in 2019, the Board of the Company has been exploring a wide range of strategic options with the assistance of external advisers. That process is still underway and the Company’s strategic objectives have not changed.’’

What you should know

  • Atlas Mara is currently the biggest shareholder in Union Bank of Nigeria, with a stake of 49.97% (approximately 50%).
  • Union Bank Nigeria Plc share price closed trading today, January 27, 2021 at N5.7, down by 3.39%. It also has a market capitalization of about N165.99 billion.
  • Based on the current market capitalization, the stake of Atlas Mara translates to approximately N82.9 billion.

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Debt Securities

Ecobank Nigeria secures N50 billion 10-Year subordinated loan

Ecobank Nigeria has secured a N50 billion, 10-year bilateral subordinated loan.

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Ecobank Nigeria

Ecobank Nigeria, a subsidiary of Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (‘’ETI’’) has announced that it has secured a N50 billion, 10-year bilateral subordinated loan.

This is according to a disclosure signed by the Group Head, Adenike Laoye and sent to the Nigerian Stock Exchange, as seen by Nairametrics.

The bilateral funding will enable the bank to maintain stable liquidity and improve its balance sheet, especially the capital adequacy ratio by an estimated circa 300 basis points.

What they are saying

The disclosure from the bank read thus:

“Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (“ETI”), the parent of the Ecobank Group, announces that one of its significant subsidiaries, Ecobank Nigeria, secured N50 billion, 10-Year bilateral subordinated loan.

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“The bilateral funding provides stable medium-term liquidity to the balance sheet of Ecobank Nigeria and positively improved its balance sheet ratios, especially the capital adequacy ratio by circa 300 basis points. The transaction proceeds would be deployed to support Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (“MSMEs”) and Small Corporates.”

What you should know

Ecobank Transnational Inc. had earlier recorded 11% rise in its interest income to N139.6 billion for Q3 2020, as captured by Nairametrics.

  • Subordinated loans have lower priority than other debt instruments in case of liquidation. They are only repayable after other debts have been paid.
  • This debt can either be secured or unsecured and it typically has a lower credit rating and higher yield than other senior debt.

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Financial Services

Niger Insurance Plc gets shareholders nod to restructure business

Niger Insurance Plc has announced plans to restructure its insurance business into distinct but mutually dependent business entities.

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Edwin Igbiti

Niger Insurance Plc has obtained shareholders’ approval to restructure its insurance business into general, life and business insurance, with each segment to be structured as a separate legal entity.

This is part of the resolutions passed at the 50th Annual General Meeting of Niger Insurance Plc., held on 20th of January, 2021 at Peninsula Hotel in Lekki, Lagos.

The decision to restructure the company is in a bid to make it more efficient and profitable to stakeholders, especially as efforts are geared towards overturning a loss of about 1,1723.2% Year-on-Year, earlier made by the company in its last reported financial statement, Q2, 2020, as reported by Nairametrics.

Other key decisions reached at the 50th AGM include;

  • The re-appointment of Mr Ebi Enaholo and Mrs. Olufemi Owopetu as Directors of the company.
  • Acceptance of the presented financial statement for the year ended December 31, 2019 and the report of the audit committee, directors and auditors.
  • Directors were authorized to fix the remuneration of the auditors.
  • Directors were authorized to appoint external auditors to replace retiring auditors of the company.
  • The appointment of four individuals as members of the audit committee.
  • A decision to restructure the company’s business capital was also reached.

In case you missed it: The shareholders of Niger Insurance Plc in the 49th Annual General Meeting approved the decision by the company’s board to raise additional capital to the tune of N15 billion, in a bid to meet the revised recapitalization targets for general and life insurance companies.

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What you should know: The House of Representatives had in December 2020 directed NAICOM to suspend the mandatory deadline for the first phase of 50%-60% of the minimum paid-up share capital for insurance and reinsurance firms.

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