Federal Government, Monday, disclosed that it had concluded plan to establish a bank for Small and Medium Enterprises (SME), just as it assured civil servants of prompt payment of February salary.
The bank tagged; ‘Development Bank of Nigeria’ will assist the small scale business owners to access fund for a long period of time.
The Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, who stated this at a Stakeholders’ Conversation on Communicating Government Policies, Programmes and Activities to Traditional Rulers, Market Men/Women organised by the National Orientation Agency (NOA), in Abuja, said the bank would be launched next month.
Her words; “There are many people who has business ideas here, and they are unable to access funds, and it always taken two to three years to establish. But when you go for a loan if you are lucky what do they tell you? They will start telling you to pay after a year, you are not able to march the timing of the loan you get with the timing of your investment.
“This administration is creating a bank called ‘Development Bank of Nigeria’ that would allow people borrow from five to seven years.
“This bank will be launched next month, and when it’s on ground, it will help Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) to access funding for a longer period of time, something they have never being able to do. That is another achievement this administration has been able to put in place.”
Speaking on the several achievements of the present administration, the minister noted that the government was diversifying the economy to improve the well being of Nigerians, adding that, the country’s economy would grows at 40 percent oil and 60 percent non-oil.
According to her, “We need to diversify our economy, we don’t want to depend on oil anymore, we want our economy to be 40 percent oil and 60 percent non oil economy, and we have started that work.
“Last year, we said we should try and get additional N75 billion from non oil, do you know how much we got? N110 billion. So, it means the potential is there for us to get more and diversify our source of revenue. This government has worked hard to make economy very diversed.”