CBN to spend N100bn on textile industry revival

• As uniformed services sign MoU with local garment companies

Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele said, on Tuesday, that the bank intended to deploy as much as N100 billion loans in its bid to revive ailing cotton and textile (CTG) industry.

He spoke in Abuja during the signing of two memoranda of understanding between the National Cotton Association of Nigeria (NACOTAN) and Ginning Companies and also between Nigerian Textile Manufacturers Association and Armed Forces of Nigeria Police, Paramilitary Institutions and National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

Already, Emefiele said N50 billion had been disbursed from the N100 billion. The MoUs will see the ginning companies buying off cotton produced by farmers while textile manufacturers will supply materials for the production of uniforms by Nigerian uniformed forces.

According to the CBN Governor, “Nigerian cotton, textiles and garment sector has been facing very difficult challenges resulting not only in the closure of over 150 textiles firms in Nigeria but also loss of over 2 million jobs on 1990s beginning from the cotton farmers, to the ginneries and textile firms.

“Farmers and processors had to deal with low-quality seeds, rising operating costs and weak sales due to the high energy cost of running factories, smuggling of textile goods, and poor access to finance.

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“Smuggling of textiles goods alone is estimated to have cost the nation an import bill of over $4.0billion annually on textiles and apparel.”

Currently, the cotton planted by these hardworking farmers has begun fruiting and will soon be ready for off-taking from the Month of November.

Also, CBN has granted nine ginneries to access N19.18billion loan to retool their processing plants, while providing them with improved access to finance at a single-digit interest rate.

“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.”

He gave the assurance that CBN will work with the security agencies alongside concerned textile and garment factories to ensure that the finished products, as well as wastes, are treated as currency -with the highest level of security until they are delivered to the right clients or disposed of accordingly.

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