As the economic recession facing the country continues to bite harder, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced that it was aware of the troubling economic outlay in country.
The nation’s apex bank however declared that as part of palliative measures, it has established special funds under its various schemes to help provide easy access to investment funds by Micro Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSME).
To this end, the CBN asked Nigerians to take advantage of the numerous policies, initiatives and programmes packaged by the bank to cushion the effects of the biting economic recession in the country.
It noted for instance that its N220 billion funds made available for MSME can be easily accessed.
Speaking at the bank’s fair organised for small and medium scale enterprises, artisan, farmers, banks, hairdressers, barbers, shoemakers and other business groups in Enugu at the weekend, the Acting Director, Corporate Communications of CBN, Isaac Okoroafor assured that the prevailing economic situation would not last long.
“Though we are in trouble, it is just for a while. As fast as we can, let us re-adjust ourselves so we can get out of the present situation.
“First of all, what is recession? Recession simply put is a period of dwindling economic realities. Incomes are falling and government’s revenue is dwindling. Unemployment is increasing because businesses are not the way they should be. They sack workers because income is shrinking.
“People are not spending especially in our case because oil prices have collapsed and foreign exchange receipts have dried up; falling from N3.2billion to less than N500 million a month. With this kind of situation, Nigerians should try to adjust themselves. This is the real change. We need to change our ways to the realisation of a new troubling situation which is that it is no longer business as usual. Nigerians should learn how to save the little they have so they can use it over time.
“Nigerians should begin to eat what we produce and not to look for expensive dollars to import food. We should go back to corn, yam and made in Nigeria rice. Let us produce toothpicks and not import them from China.
“We should not import 20 million eggs from South Africa. We should stop importing chickens when we have them here. Nigeria should brace up. This is not a 100 metre marathon. Let us brace up and change our ways. The most hit now are people who have refused to realise that we ought to eat what we produce,” he explained.
On the policies packaged by the bank hoping to cushion the effects of the economic challenge, Okoroafor said 60 ;per cent of MSME development fund was meant for women and women owned enterprises noting that some states have already accessed the funds to the tune of N2 billion