The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) thursday reassured Nigerians that the resumed implementation of the cashless policy of the bank is aimed at encouraging and deepening financial inclusion through the use of alternative channels in line with global best practice.
Speaking at the CBN special day at the ongoing 2019 Abuja International Trade Fair, CBN Director, Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Isaac Okoroafor, said contrary to insinuations, the policy was not designed to impoverish Nigerians.
According to him, the apex bank under the leadership of Mr. Godwin Emefiele, would continue to deliver on its mandate of ensuring monetary and price stability as well as developmental interventions in SMEs financing for sustainable economic growth and development.
He said the theme of the trade fair, “Remodeling SMEs Financial: Options and Solutions”, captured the focus and deliberate efforts by the bank towards stimulating economic growth through backward integration and expansion of small enterprises, which he described as engine of growth, particularly in emerging economies.
Okoroafor said the apex bank currently has 29 intervention programmes targeted at various stakeholder groups including farmers, women, youth and SMEs, agriculture, health, power, aviation and creative industry to kick start economic growth and development.
He added that a total of 255 private and 14 state government anchors had participated in the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) of the CBN as at June 2019, adding that the scheme has benefited 1,140,854 million farmers in 17 different agricultural commodities.
The CBN director said a total of 1,132,260 million jobs had also been created along the various agricultural value chains under the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS).
Meanwhile, President of the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), Prince Adetokunbo Kayode, has commended the genuine efforts of CBN to the regulation, preservation and stabilisation of the integrity of the naira.
“In the area of development finance, he has ensured the supply of finance to various sectors of the economy which has stimulated its growth.
“Similarly, the Nigerian payment system has witnessed remarkable achievements in the recent past, with the introduction of a number of initiatives under the payments system vision,” he stated.
Kayode, represented by ACCI Director General, Mrs. Tonia Shoyele, added that “The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the bank, which has the responsibility of formulating monetary and credit policy, has also done remarkably well in either adjusting or retaining key indicators.
“We also appreciate the swift response by the CBN which have succeeded in ridding our economy of sharp practices by some financial institutions or houses.”