The Bank of Industry (BoI) says it has partnered Diamond Bank to provide soft loan to traders, artisans, cooperatives, youth and farmers in the country
The Acting Managing Director, BoI, Mr Waheed Olagunju, made this known at the launching of the programme late on Tuesday in Lagos.
Olagunju said that the Federal Government introduced the scheme because of its passion for sustainable business growth and empowerment of micro-entrepreneurs.
He said under the scheme, tagged: Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), the partnership would disburse N140 billion to micro-entrepreneurs
According to him, GEEP is one of the social intervention programmes of the Federal Government executed by the bank.
“Through GEEP’s MarketMoni product, government seeks to promote financial inclusion and access to credit for 1.6 million market traders, artisans, cooperatives, youth and farmers.
“MarketMoni is a microcredit loan, easy to access between N10,000 to N100,000 and repayable in six months.
“The idea is to make the loan easily accessible and affordable to the beneficiaries provided the beneficiary has a Bank Verification Number (BVN) and belong to a market association.
“Basically, it is a loan that is affordable with no interest rate, except for administrative fee, which is five per cent flat.
“That means, if you take N20, 000 loan you will repay N21, 000 at the end of six months.
“The beauty is that it is a weekly repayment so it is easy for the beneficiary,” he said.
Olagunju, represented by Mrs Toyin Adeniji, Executive Director, Financial Inclusion and Micro Enterprise, BoI, said the partnership was to enhance the participation of the informal sector in the banking sector.
Mr Uzoma Dozie, Chief Executive Officer, Diamond Bank, said that the synergy would translate to gender empowerment, job creation, business growth and promote government’s cashless policy system.
“We are not just providing finance but using ICT to formalise the vibrant and informal sector of the economy,” Dozie said.