German agency facilitates N500m loans for MSMEs in partner states – Official

1 The Nigerian Competitiveness Project (NICOP) from German Agency for International Companies (GIZ) says it has facilitated N500 million loans for value crop growers in Nigeria’s partner states.

2 Ms Ana VinambresProject Manager, GIZ-NIPCOrevealed it at a learning and sharing event, held at Lagos Wednesday.

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3 She added that NICOP was designed to support micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in key value chains to inclusively improve the production of tomatoes, ginger, chilli, leather and garments to promote structural transformation.

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4 Nigeria News Agency reports that NICOP is a four-year project commissioned in 2018 by GermanyBMZ and co-financed by the European Union within the framework of the West African Competitiveness envelope.

5 NICOP is implemented by the GIZ Pro-Poor Growth and Employment Program in Nigeria – SEDINin Kano, Kaduna, Plateau, Ogun, OyoLagos and Abia States.

6 According to Vinambres, the project is financed by donors, the European Union and the German agency with 11 million euros for the whole implementation, given to the actors of the value chain in the form of inputs and capacity building and not in cash.

seven “This money does not come from our pocket.

8 We have actually been facilitated by financial institutions, commercial banks, microfinance banks, BoI, government programs like the Anchor Borrowers program.

9 “We are also facilitating through franchises, impact investments and other different financial institutions that will continue to fund.

ten “Our data showed that we were able to achieve some truly remarkable numbers.

11 We have reached over 28,000 beneficiaries in all of these states and over 21,000 of these beneficiaries have increased their income by more than 20%.

12 “We’re actually making sure that financial institutions understand our farmers’ business model, and we’re empowering applicants to be ready for that funding,” she said.

13 Vinambres also said fatteners were not forced to be facilitated, but such deals were happening because financial institutions and farmers believed it was a good business model to promote sustainability.

14 She added that the project has also supported exports of about 600 million naira of different crops, standardization, certification and different support measures which have really increased the knowledge and capacity of our various beneficiaries.

15 M Andre Smiththe project’s access to finance adviser, said the mechanisms adopted had been to encourage farmers in the cluster to access funds.

16 “The mechanisms in place are the theory that a management team will accept funding on behalf of all.

17 And that means a bank only has to process one transaction.

18 “Find the people who are looking to borrow, understand the people, and then the potential uses for that requested money, so it should be pretty easy to do a single transaction with a limited number of people and look at the economy of scale of that. a cluster and we present this cluster to a bank.

19 “We’re not saying there’s 10 people who can each make N1000, we’re saying there’s a business here that collectively could be worth a billion, and everyone’s doing it and they’re underrepresented and unrecognized.

20 “So, of course, we’re evaluating each of the clusters that my colleagues in manufacturing and agriculture have looked at, and there’s no immediate one-size-fits-all solution,” he said.

21 Smith also said the project is a franchise, private equity, diaspora investment and crowdfunding venture.

22 He said the project also tried to reduce risk to communities.

23 “The clusters are better business people because we trained them in farming practices and financial literacy,” he said.

24 Also speaking, Ms. Emma OdundoTeam Leader, NICOP Technical Interventions, said some of the yields recorded had been achieved through the varieties that had been promoted.

25 “Some of them are climate resilient and that has really worked with the farmers.

26 “We have also adopted some form of business models, including contract farming and off-take agreements to be able to facilitate relationships between buyers and smallholder farmers.

27 “Right now.

28 We have also provided materials to help farmer groups to be able to help them with primary processing,” she said.

29 Odundo added that there are opportunities that could be taken advantage of in Lagos.

30 “Most important was that Lagos provided a conducive business environment for various registrations, opportunities to promote product penetration across a population that provides a range market,” she said.

31 NOPE reports that stakeholders represented at the meeting included the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF)beneficiaries and commercial banks.

32 NewsSourceCredit: NAN


James R. Rhodes