BoI stakes N16.5b on Kano SMEs, targets industrial clusters
… State office to boost Northwest’s intervention scheme
The Bank of Industry (BoI) has unveiled plans to improve its intervention exercise to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Kano State through identified industrial clusters, even as its loan portfolio to the sector hit about N16.5billion.
According to the bank, the industrial cluster approach is in pursuit of an inclusive growth in the state and part of efforts to extend financial support to the entrepreneurs operating therein.
Speaking at the commissioning of the Bank’s office in Kano, on Wednesday, the BoI’s Managing Director, Rasheed Olaoluwa said the financial institution’s presence in the ancient city will greatly enhance support for the real sector and also complement the state government’s socio-economic development objectives.
In implementing the matching fund partnership, Olaoluwa explained that BoI received 311 loan applications amounting to N3.58 billion through the Kano State Ministry of Commerce, Industry, Cooperatives and Tourism, out of which 167 loans totaling N499.1 million have been approved.
Specifically, some of the identified clusters include, groundnut oil milling, garmenting, tanneries for leather products, tomato processing, rice milling, grain processing, metal fabrication, plastics, printing and kannywood. “In terms of developmental impact, 595 direct and 425 indirect jobs have been created thus far.
I would also like to add that BoI has, on its own, provided direct loans in excess of N16.0 billion to 68 other enterprises in Kano State. “Kano State is very central to BoI’s strategy of ensuring that our development finance services are brought closer to the people, by virtue of Kano’s pedigree of being the second largest industrial base in Nigeria and the largest in Northern Nigeria.
Thus, our choice of Kano as our second State Office in the North West region was very well considered. The office will also serve BoI’s customers in the neighbouring states such as Jigawa and Katsina states”, Olaoluwa added.
He however appealed to the state government to increase its contributions to the matching fund agreement, adding that N250 million, which was matched in equal amount by BoI has so far been released by the state out of the N2 billion signed under the pact.
On his part, Kano State Governor, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje commended the bank for establishing its office in the state, noting that the move would further strengthen ties between the state government and the bank as well as boost industrialisation efforts in the state.
Ganduje who was represented by his Deputy, Prof. Hafiz Abubakar urged the bank to consider increasing its stake in the state, especially in critical infrastructural development projects that would aid industrial growth.
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