Akwa Ibom Pledges To Pay Interest On CBN Loan For SMEs

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel
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From Mfon Ekefre, Uyo
The Akwa Ibom State government has promised to pay the interest on loans the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will give Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) in the state.
Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Akan Okon, dropped the hint when he received in audience executive members of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority of Nigeria (SMEDAN) in his office recently.
He said the move was part of efforts to assist small scale businessmen to thrive and overcome the challenge of interest-serving.
The commissioner said with the pre-launch of the CBN”s MSME loan scheme in the state, emphasis would be on training and capacity building for beneficiaries to acquire knowledge , managerial skills to start and grow their businesses, adding that the enabling environment already in place would pave way for enduring enterprise.
While commending SMEDAN for their great strides in the state, the commissioner assured that government would work closely with the agency by keying into their laudable programmes and charged them to be veritable partners in the open banks credit scheme through their database access, mentoring, monitoring, and supervision to ensure application of funds for the purpose for which it was meant for.
Centre Manager for of SMEDAN, Lucy Ekpenyong, said the visit was energies the existing working relationship between the agency and the state government and to fashion out ways to move the sub-sector forward.
The centre manager said they have achieved a lot in the last eight years despite financial constraints through effective application of workable framework such as organising sensitisation workshops, advisory roles, mentoring, supervision etc and solicit greater collaboration to address problems impeding the systematic development and growth of SME in the state.
It would be recalled that the CBN MSME credit scheme is launched by the Federal Government in 2014 was geared towards bolstering the performance of small scale enterprises in the country with a single digit interest rate.

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