The Central Bank of Nigeria has offered to provide agricultural funding for about 1.6 million farmers during the 2020 wet planting season.
The CBN Director, Development Finance Department, Mr Yila Yusuf made this known during a flag-off of Farm Input Distribution for cotton farmers for the planting season in Kwali, Abuja on Tuesday.
Represented by Mr Ayoola Quadri, the Director explained that the bank would finance the farmers under the bank’s 10 focal commodities, which would cut across the value chains and gurantee food security in the country.
On cotton production, Yila Yusuf said CBN has “engaged 256,000 farmers in cotton production for 2020 planting season through its Anchor Borrowers programme who are expected to repay the loan at five percent”.
He said the CBN was working hard to revive Cottons, Textiles and Garments (CTG) industry to create jobs and boost the economy of the country.
Yusuf noted that the CBN “was doing backward integration to ensure that the entire value chain in the industry was funded for the benefit of the people and the country.
The President, National Cotton Association of Nigeria, Mr Anibe Achimugu, noted that with the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP) facilities provided by CBN, the farmers were witnessing the turn-around in the production output.
He urged beneficiaries to pay back the loan to enable others to benefit while expressing hope that more people would be brought to the scheme in 2021.
The president said about 2,200 farmers who were grouped into clusters had benefited from CBN’s intervention in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).