The Nigerian Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending, the Central Bank of Nigeria and Deposit Money Banks has agreed to arouse the flow of lending to the agricultural sector.
This was the outcome of a retreat organised by NIRSAL for risks officers of banks, the CBN and other stakeholders in the financial segment.
The Deputy Governor, Financial System Stability, Mrs Aisha Ahmad; the Managing Director, Union Bank Plc, Mr Emeka Emuwa; and the Managing Director of Ecobank, Mr Patrick Akinwuntan were present at the event.
The other banks signified at the event were Guaranty Trust Bank, Keystone Bank, First City Monument Bank, First Bank, Unity Bank, Diamond Bank, Access Bank, Heritage Bank, and Sterling Bank.
The decision to increase lending to the agricultural sector was highlighted by the fact that overall bank lending to the sector had drifted between three percent and four percent over the past eight years.
A statement from NIRSAL on Sunday quoted its Managing Director, Mr Aliyu Abdulhameed, to have stated that agriculture merits more support because of its capacity to generate jobs and contribute to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.
He said, NIRSAL is rightly placed through our involvement pillars to effectively de-risk the sector and promote feasible agricultural businesses.
The focus of devising at the forum, which NIRSAL hosted in association with the Central Bank of Nigeria, was to better understand.
The statement said that it was observed at the forum that up to 79 percent of excluded applications for agric funding were as a result of improper documentation.
It added that investors at the retreat agreed that there was the need to improve capacity building towards changing the awareness of agribusiness from that of a high-risk segment.