BoI grants N1.1bn facility to local manufacturers of SIM, National ID cards

By The Citizen

The Bank of Industry (BoI) has granted N1.1 billion credit facility to local manufacturers of electronic payment cards, SIM cards, National ID card and Voters card.

Mr. Rasheed Olaoluwa, BoI Managing Director, disclosed this during a loan monitoring exercise carried out by the management of the bank to one of the manufacturers, Secure ID and its subsidiary, Secure Card Manufacturing Limited in Lagos.

'Secure ID and its subsidiary are our customers. BoI has supported the factory with N1.1 billion. Am aware they have facilities from two other banks and there are also significant equities that have gone into the business.

'We are delighted at BoI that this project has come alive. We actually saw card production going on and the capacity utilisation is close to 70 percent. So the company is doing very well. Our visit   is to see how the money has worked. I am very delighted that when you give a customer a facility and he uses the facility very well and you have come for visit, and you see it was being well used, you get delighted as a banker and we are very delighted today.

This is what we are trying to encourage-local production in a number of areas and I am happy that in terms of the facility they have established here, not only are they able to manufacture locally but they have been able to establish a kind of facility that is very modern by using smart manufacturing technology.'

The banker described the investment as very significant to the Nigerian economy, stressing 'This is the first integrated card manufacturing business not only in Nigeria, West Africa and the entire sub Sahara Africa. As Nigerians, we should be very proud at what the teams at Secure ID have achieved.

They have just done a backward integration. What has happened up to this time is that we used to import a lot of cards that are personalized locally.

The other things I should point out is, we are not just talking about debit and credit cards, the factory here has other capabilities, for instance, they have capability to produce all SIM cards that the telecoms require. The SIM cards today are being imported and there is no reason we can't get the telecoms in Nigeria to patronise Secure ID and its subsidiary to produce all the SIM cards they require locally.

'What this mean is that as a country we are making progress; I think we need to believe in ourselves; the beauty of it is that Secure Card is 100 percent Nigerian company. Nigeria is a large country; 170 million people are a large market and what we need to do is to take step and ensure we are able to leverage on this population. - Vanguard.