Nigeria: My focus is on robust monetary policy and building a sound financial system – Emefiele

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele yesterday reiterated that his current focus is on delivering a robust monetary policy and tackling inflation, which he said remains a global problem. Emefiele said so via his verified Twitter account, @GodwinIEmefiele, on the same day he revealed that the Federal Government had disbursed a total of N948 billion to 4,478,381 smallholder farmers to boost food production in Nigeria.

In the Tweet, Emefiele said he was determined to build a strong financial system in an increasingly uncertain global economy. He said he was also focusing on boosting development finance and supporting farmers and manufacturers as part of the apex bank’s self-sufficiency and import substitution drive.

He added that he remained committed to raising 15 trillion naira for the infrastructure company (InfraCo) to boost infrastructure financing in the country.

The CBN Governor further said that he is committed to providing a world-class International Financial Center (IFC) in Lagos and providing President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration with the necessary support to finish strong.

Earlier in February, Emefiele, while reacting to speculation around his alleged interest in the 2023 presidential race, said it was President Muhammadu Buhari’s prerogative to execute his succession plan in line with global best practices, to good governance and the pursuit of peace and progress. from the country.

The CBN governor emphasized that he was focused on his job, even as he pledged to continue supporting the federal government’s economic stimulus campaign.

Meanwhile, at Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti, while delivering a convening lecture titled “The Role of Central Banking in Managing Economic Downturns”, to mark the university’s 40th anniversary Yesterday, Emefiele disclosed that the federal government has disbursed a total of N948 billion to 4,478,381 smallholder farmers to boost food production in the country.

He added that in addition to encouraging agriculture, the program has generated a total of 12.5 million direct and indirect jobs for Nigerian youth.

The CBN Governor said that under the credit facility to help households and businesses that suffered major losses during the pandemic, the central bank had disbursed N368.79 billion to 778,000 beneficiaries.

Giving the breakdown of how the facility was disbursed, Emefiele revealed that 648,052 households and owners of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) benefited from the policy led by the federal government.

He said, “As you all know, one of the major challenges facing the Nigerian economy is the over-reliance on revenue and foreign exchange earnings from the sale of crude oil, even though the Gasoline represents only 10% of our gross domestic product (GDP). ).

“More so, the non-oil sector, particularly the agricultural and manufacturing sectors, which contribute around 30 and 13% of our GDP, has been plagued with low investment, insufficient credit to the real sector and weak infrastructure.

“Furthermore, with an annual population growth rate of 2.8%, it was important that every effort be made available to Nigerians, especially in sectors that had the potential to absorb young people.

“We were aware that if the necessary support was provided to households and businesses, productivity would increase and investment would flow into our economy.”

Emefiele articulated the current economic downturn and difficulties on the economic recession of 2015-2017 and the COVID-19 pandemic which led to a drop in income and a reduction in the portfolio of foreign investments.

In his presentation, EKSU Vice-Chancellor Prof. Edward Olanipekun described the university’s 40 years as impacting the life of the state, saying the university has been a ground of reliable training for future leaders.

Olanipekun said that even if the university faces difficulties, no effort will be spared to keep the flag flying in its resolve to be a good citadel of learning for Nigerians.

The President of the occasion and Catholic Bishop of Ekiti Diocese, Bishop Felix Ajakaye, urged governments to be more pragmatic in implementing their policies so that they have an impact on the citizens.

“Our thinking and actions must be practically oriented. We must go beyond conferences by being practical in dealing with policies that can benefit poor Nigerians,” the Bishop advised.

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Don F. Davis