The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL Plc) has secured N232m credit to boost poultry and cocoa export in Cross River state.
The financing from Union and Sterling banks, is for Gbagolo Integrated Farms, a livestock producer, and TOAJ Nigeria, a cocoa dealer and is intended to generate significant gains for the local and national economies.
The facility follows the issuance of a 50% Credit Risk Guarantee (CRG) and 20% Interest Drawback (IDB) by the Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL Plc) on the respective loans to the above farmers in Cross River.
NIRSAL Plc facilitated the approval and disbursement of N81.8m and N150m mi from Union Bank Plc and Sterling Bank Plc respectively.
Gbagolo Integrated Farms Limited will use its N81.8 million Term Loan to finance the purchase of 25,000 point of lay birds, 25,000 capacity battery cages and feeding compliments while TOAJ Nigeria Limited will channel its N150m m export/trade finance facility towards the sourcing and purchase of cocoa for export.
The injection of these finances into the poultry and cocoa value chains in Cross River State will create a positive knock-on effect for players along each segment of both value chains and the agribusinesses’ host communities at large.
Speaking during the official launch of the Gbagolo Integrated Farms Limited and TOAJ Nigeria Limited projects in Akpabuyo Local Government Area of Cross River State, NIRSAL Plc’s Managing Director/CEO, Aliyu Abdulhameed, said both projects are testaments of NIRSAL Plc’s bid to “transforming the economy, delivering inclusive growth and positively impacting the lives of Nigerians”.
Abdulhameed added that, “as a guarantor, NIRSAL Plc’s intervention positively impacts both the lender and the borrower, as well as the overall economy.
“The lender invests safely and earns competitive returns; the borrower’s capacity utilization and productivity is increased, and the economy reaps the benefits of the backward integration occasioned by increased local production at the expense of importation of essential goods.”
He enjoined all agricultural value chain stakeholders in the South-South region and the entire country to leverage NIRSAL’s CRG as the collateral required for getting commercial bank financing for their agribusinesses, no matter their size or location.
On his part, Mr Peter Akpaudo, the Union Bank Plc’s Area Business Executive, the lenders to Gbagolo, said beside the facility, NIRSAL PLC is also offering technical assistance and round-the-clock project monitoring, making lending to agriculture and agribusiness easy.
On his part, Mr. Uchenna Agbowo, Business Executive, Commercial, South-East Sterling Bank Plc, financiers of TOAJ Nigeria Limited, said Sterling Bank has the highest loan book for agriculture amongst commercial banks in Nigeria.
He stated that the bank has been enjoying NIRSAL’s support and will continue to count on NIRSAL for the safety of their agribusiness investments.
In his speech, the CEO of Gbagolo Integrated Farms Limited revealed that it would have been difficult to service the loan they received from Union Bank if not for NIRSAL’s Interest Drawback (IDB) scheme.
The company’s poultry department, which received the credit support, has 60,000 birds and runs an on-farm feed mill with four tons capacity mixer per hour.
For TOAJ Nigeria Limited, Mr. Taiwo Sunday said NIRSAL’s support has helped the company to acquire a 5,000 MT-capacity warehouse in Osogbo, the Osun State capital.
Mr. Taiwo said that the company had been expanding its frontiers to the South-West for the purpose of export and, with NIRSAL’s support, it can now engage more farmers, procure more cocoa, and employ more staff.
NIRSAL Plc has facilitated over N128bn for agriculture and agribusiness across the country since its inception.