• Monday, May 27, 2024
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NACCIMA asks BoI to include working capital in loans to SMEs

The Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) has urged the Bank of Industry (BoI) to include working capital in the loans offered to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

Alaba Lawson, the deputy president of NACCIMA, who made the call in an interview on Wednesday in Abuja, noted with concern that the BoI loans only provided machineries for the SMEs without any provision for the working capital.

According to her, it is the working capital that will make it possible for the machineries to work and that will enable the operator to refund the loan as at when due.

“I have an experience where one of our women got the machineries through the BoI intervention fund but as we speak, she has not got the working capital.

“We are now working with our cooperative to see how to get her a working capital to start the business. If you have machineries without working capital then the SME is a failure,” she said.

She also asked the BoI to evolve a loan structure that would take into consideration the working capital for the SMEs that would be in single digit interest rate.

Also, a former president of Abuja Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ABUCCIMA), Dele Oye, said the problem was the nature of loans from banks.
He said that often banks did not take the stakeholders into confidence when designing the loan structure.

Oye said there was no way business owners could get the best out of the financial assistance the government was putting in place for them.

He noted that such loans if the beneficiaries were not involved in the planning stage with the financial institutions may not be beneficial.

“We are using this opportunity to appeal to BoI and indeed the government that whenever they have anything for the business community, they should let us be part of the process of designing the structure.

“So, it becomes a lot easier to apply and that makes it easier also for us to access and become successful businessmen,” he said.