The Nigerian Export-Import Bank on Thursday gave approval for the disbursement of the sum of N25bn to exporters in the non-oil sector.
The move is part of efforts aimed at stimulating the non-oil sector to become a major foreign exchange earner for the country.
The development was confirmed by the Managing Director, NEXIM Bank, Mr Abba Bello, on Thursday in Abuja.
He said the approval of the N25bn facility followed a review of various applications under the Export Development Fund.
The review, according to him, was done at a meeting of the Board of Directors held on Thursday in Abuja.
Bello said the N25bn loan approved for non-oil exporters was expected to support about 15,000 direct and indirect jobs, and facilitate foreign exchange inflow of about $100m from non-oil exports.
He stated, “The Nigerian Export-Import Bank has approved the disbursement of loans totalling about N25bn in support of various projects in the non-oil export sector.
“Beneficiaries included exporters of agricultural and value-added products, who submitted applications for stocking facilities and working capital to enable them to execute their export contracts.”
The NEXIM Bank boss explained that the facility would be disbursed to exporters of agricultural and value-added products, who submitted applications for working capital to enable them execute their export contracts.
The projects, he noted, were distributed across the country and would have a significant impact on the economy particularly in the area of job creation and poverty reduction.
Some of the products that would benefit from the loan are cocoa, cashew, sesame seed, gum Arabic and leather.
He added, “It is expected that disbursement will commence immediately to maximise the benefits of the export season towards achieving the economic diversification objectives of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari under the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan,” Bello added.
The Central Bank of Nigeria established the N50bn Export Development Fund to be disbursed at single digit, which is currently being managed by NEXIM.
Following the inauguration of the new board in March, the Minister of Finance had charged the members to hit the ground running to ensure that the institution achieved its mandate of diversifying the foreign exchange earnings of the Nigerian economy.