The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), through Targeted Credit Facility (TCF), has disbursed N343.21billion to 726,198 beneficiaries, comprising 602,730 households and 123,468 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
The CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele also assured that the bank will launch the eNaira, its digital currency, in a couple of days from now.
He told a conference in Abuja that the launch would make Nigeria “one of the first countries in Africa, and indeed the globe, to adopt the digitisation of its national currency”.
The Director, Corporate Communication Department, Osita Nwanisobi disclosed the disbursement of N343.21billion cash at the CBN special day at the 16th International Trade Fair in Abuja, stating that there is still the disbursement of N134,57billlion to 38,140 beneficiaries under the Agribusiness Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS).
He added that there is the energy one year extension of moratorium on principal repayment for CBN intervention facilities. The reduction of interest rate on CBN intervention loans from 9-5 percent.
There is the deployment of N756billion to 3.7million farmers cultivating over 4.6 million hectares of farmland under the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP).
The mobilization of key stakeholders in the Nigeria economy through the CACOVID alliance which led to the provision of over N23billion in relief materials to affected households and the setup of 39 isolation centers.
Nwaanisobi said the apex bank will be unveiling the CBN digital currency, the eNaira, this is the digital version of Nigeria legal tender with the same value as fiat naira. The CBN is the Central authority in terms of minting and issuance of the eNaira while banks and other financial Service providers will be involved in the distribution of the currency.
The CBN had announced plans to launch its own digital currency this year after Nigeria barred banks and financial institutions from dealing in or facilitating transactions in cryptocurrencies in February.
Emefiele had previously said the eNaira would operate as a wallet against which customers could hold existing funds in their bank accounts, and that this would accelerate financial inclusion and enable cheaper and faster remittance inflows.
The CBN had named Barbados-based Bitt Inc as its technical partner in developing the eNaira.