Cross River, BoI Sign MoU On N500m Loan For Small Enterprises
CALABAR, May 03, (THEWILL) - Cross River State Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Bank of Industries (BOI) for the provision of financial lifeline to small and medium scale enterprises.
Speaking at the ceremony, Governor Liyel Imoke described BOI as greater partner in the state’s private sector, assuring that the N500 million loan, which will be made available to the organised private sector, has the potential of creating wealth and job, thereby transforming the socio-economic landscape of the state.
Imoke said the agreement was signed at the right time because the state has comparative advantage in certain areas, which it has identified for the interest of the private sector especially in the hospitality industry.
He disclosed that the state has made available some incentives for the private sector in its effort to create service economy, explaining that certain facilities are being put in place around Tinapa Business and Leisure Resort to stimulate activities there.
According to him, the new neighbourhood is to drive activities within Tinapa as the new road to the resort is expected to bring it nearer to the city, reducing the distance by 12 kilometres.
Facilities expected to be located within the new neighbourhood include an Ultra modern Calabar International Conference Centre, a hotel, new Tinapa Media City for movie productions, ICT Park, International Finance Corporation (IFC) powered hospital, a private university, new golf course and a carnival village.
“The State is looking forward to the bank to enable it engage in the generation, distribution and transmission of energy from its proposed power plant, which small and medium scale enterprises can equally key into and benefit from,” he said.
The Managing Director of Bank of Industries, Mrs. Evelyn Opotu said the bank is saddled with the responsibility of powering and supporting small and medium scale businesses because they are vulnerable, and that the N500 million will be given to the beneficiaries directly. She said Cross River State was chosen because of its leading role in tourism sector.
“I would like a situation where stronger banks work on behalf of BOI,” she said. “If the loan is well utilised, BOI will increase it to N2 billion.”