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Business News of Saturday, 11 November 2023


Access Bank announces N30bn initiative for 4 million women, youth-owned businesses in Nigeria

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Access Bank has announced that it will partner with the Office of the Vice President to provide N30 billion for four million Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), women, and youth businesses in Nigeria.

The bank's Group Managing Director, Roosevelt Ogbonna, revealed this while fielding questions from journalists after a meeting with Vice President Kashim Shetimma in Abuja.

Women-owned businesses are to be treated specially

Reports say Ogbonna disclosed that the bank would provide the N30 billion to MSMEs at a discounted rate of between 15 and 17%.

The scheme would benefit 700,000 to one million, while four million would benefit in the long run, Ogbonna stated.

According to the Access Bank boss, the Vice President directed that special attention be paid to women-run businesses.

Ogbonna said: "We do agree and determine that about 66 per cent of MSMEs in Nigeria are owned by women and youths. And one of the challenges they faced was access to finance.

Working with the Office of the Vice-President, we agreed today that Access Bank will provide about N30 billion towards supporting MSMEs and youths."

Alongside the loan, businesses to given capacity-building

Per the bank, beneficiaries of the loan would undergo capacity-building to enable them to optimize the loan. At the same time, the companies would be trained to help them scout for new markets for the products or services they offer.

The Senior Special Assistant to President Bola Tinubu on Job Creation and MSMEs, Office of the Vice President, Temitola Adekunle, said the Nigerian Government is dedicated to partnering with the private sector to support small businesses.