Implementation of CBN’s COVID-19 interventions fall short of expectations – MAN

The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria says the implementation of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Covid-19 response funds and other similar federal government initiatives has failed to meet its expectations.

It said the various credit facilities and supports reserved for its members as a result of the pandemic were not accessible to a significant fraction of its members.

KPMG data indicates that at least N1tn has been earmarked by the federal government to help manufacturing companies cushion the adverse effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, the nation’s top manufacturing business body said that while the federal government had risen to the occasion by providing buffers to help manufacturers through grants and soft loans, many of its deserving members did not have access to earmarked funds.

The director general of MAN, Mr. Segun Ajayi-Kadir, made these revelations during an interview with our correspondent.

Ajayi-Kadir said that despite his request to work with the CBN to question the process and improve manufacturers’ access to response funds, adequate mechanisms had not been put in place to help a considerable fraction of manufacturers to access the various facilities and support programs. .

He said, “It is highly commendable that the government has seized the opportunity by providing a buffer to help manufacturers through soft grants/loans to reduce the impact of the pandemic on businesses. . The interventions which were in different facets include; the N50 billion target credit facility for affected households and small and medium enterprises; Intervention fund of N100 billion in healthcare loans to pharmaceutical companies and healthcare professionals intending to expand/strengthen their capacity; N1tn loans to boost local manufacturing and production in critical sectors; and also the granting of grants for R&D in the pharmaceutical sub-sector for research on the production of active pharmaceutical ingredients.

He added: “The main concern is that the implementation of the interventions has not met the expectations of the manufacturers. Most of our deserving members have not been able to access the funds and our request to work with CBN to question the process and improve manufacturer access has yet to be heard. Bona fide manufacturers, who are struggling due to the disruptions caused by COVID-19, should be specifically targeted for support and we stand ready to support CBN action in this direction,” he added. .

The MAN DG also spoke about the need to increase access to forex for manufacturers.

Additionally, Coleman Wires and Cables Managing Director, Mr. George Onofowokan, in a conversation with our correspondent, corroborated MAN’s position, saying the majority of manufacturers do not yet have access to response funds. CBN and other facilities.

“No one had direct intervention from the federal government, but indirectly the federal government helped. The interest rate was reduced, the moratorium was increased by one year by the CBN; of course, this has helped some companies during the crisis. No one received a grant directly, but invariably the government helped,” Onafowokan added.

In a similar vein, the president of the Premium Bread-Maker Association of Nigeria, Emmanuel Onuorah, said that despite numerous calls for federal government intervention, none of its members have received any subsidy or funding. ready to help cushion the adverse economic consequences of the pandemic.

“We have not benefited from the federal government. In a series of interviews we had after Covid, we always called on the feds to see what they could do to help us so the industry didn’t die out. If the industry disappears, you know the problem of unemployment and worsening insecurity in the country,” he said.

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