FED GOVERNMENT LAUNCHES N50 BILLION MICRO CREDIT FUND

The Federal Government has affirmed its commitment to micro credit aspect of the economy with the launch of the N50 billion Micro Credit Fund. Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, the nation’s Vice President who represented President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua at the 3rd Annual Microfinance Conference and Microfinance/Entrepreneurship Awards organized by the Central Bank of Nigeria in Abuja, said that it was in recognition of the fact that access to finance is a powerful tool for moving people out of poverty into economic prosperity that the Federal Government launched the N50 Billion Micro Credit Fund (MCF).

While declaring the conference open, the President in his address, commended the CBN for the implementation of the Microfinance Policy, Regulatory and Supervisory framework launched in 2005, he noted that other similar measures adopted includes the 7-Point Agenda and several economic reforms.

The Governor of the CBN, Professor Chukwuma Soludo, in his address, underscored the effects of the current global financial crisis and highlighted the need for microfinance banks to re-position for better service delivery to their target clientele. He noted that in spite of the financial meltdown, the CBN is still committed to maintaining the value of the Naira, stable exchange and single digit inflation.

He reiterated the commitments of the CBN to the development of the microfinance sub-sector through the strengthening of regulatory frame-work capacity building like the introduction of the Entrepreneurship Development Centres and Certification programme for the operators of MFBs and the release of guidelines for the establishment of the credit bureau, Deposit Insurance, Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme (ACGS) and Interest Drawback Programme (IDP). Professor Soludo called on state and local governments and high net worth individuals, to establish MFBs, especially, in view of the un-even distribution of MFBs nation-wide.

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