James Ojo, Abuja.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved N19.18 billion to fund nine ginneries across the country.
Mr Godwin Emefiele, the CBN Governor disclosed this at the signing of an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with some critical stakeholders of Cotton, Textile and Garment (CTG) su-bsector in Abuja on Tuesday.
The MoU was signed between CBN and Nigeria Cotton Association of Nigeria, Ginners Association of Nigeria as well as Nigerian Textile and Garment Manufacturers Association.
Others that signed the MoU with CBN include Armed forces, Nigerian Police force, Paramilitary institutions, NYSC and some uniform organisations.
Emefiele explained that the approval was to retooling their processing plants and provide them with improved access to finance at single digit interest rate.
According to him, this step would help to sustain their operations and improve their production capacity.
“We are improving the links between cotton farmers and ginneries, by ensuring that ginneries are able to off-take the high-quality cotton produced by these farmers.
“The same support will be extended to the textile and garment firms.
“We have invested heavily in our local textile and garment factories to retool and produce assorted uniforms for our uniformed services that meet international standards.
“We have also constituted a Textile Revival Implementation Committee (TRIC) which includes the CBN, Federal Ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development; Water Resources.
“Also, the ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment; and the Governments of Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Gombe and Zamfara States.
“This Committee is driving the initiative to achieve self-sufficiency in cotton production and textile materials within a span of three years” he explained.
Emefiele said that he had held consultative meetings with State Governments on ways to reduce the operational cost of running textile factories within their respective States.
The CBN governor also reveled that the state governments had indicated their interest in providing captive power plants in industrial areas where textile manufacturers operate.
According to him, through these initiatives, all the businesses along the cotton- textile value chain can come alive again thereby helping to improve the economy of states.
This was as President Buhari mandated CBN to provide funds for the training and re-training of workers in the Textile and Garment industry.
The mandate according to President Mohammadu Buhari, was to equip the over 40,000 Textile workers for the challenges of increasing internally generated revenue through the sector.