NEXIM Managing Director, Robert Orya, who made the disclosure in Abuja, said the bank had created lots of wealth and alleviated poverty through its intervention in the last four years, adding that it generated 24,000 jobs through its intervention fund.
He reiterated the determination of the bank to ensure that it attracted N51.2 billion through its activities annually.
The managing director said the bank gave N35.6 billion intervention to non-oil sector, and also guaranteed $27.3 million (about N4.3 billion) to beneficiaries in the sectors.
“If you convert these two amounts of money together, it would be around N39.9 billion and that has created a lot of jobs for Nigerians.
“This is capable of generating an estimated foreign exchange of 320.12 million dollars annually,” he said, explaining that the bank decided to choose manufacturing, agro-processing, solid minerals and services, which include tourism, transportation and entertainment industry, noting that due to paucity of fund, the bank decides to choose four strategic sectors that can generate employment and alleviate poverty.
He said the best way to develop the Nigeria’s economy was to give necessary fillip to the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sectors.
“In view of this, the bank has put in place structures to enhance the growth of SMEs in the country.
“From day one, I always say that if we want to move our economy forward considering its structure, the emphasis should be on the development of SMEs,” he said.
Orya said one of the things the bank did was to set up business development services to assist SMEs that had good idea but did not know how to put them in a bankable form.
He said over 90 per cent of the intervention made was for the SMEs because that was where small jobs could be created.
The managing director said it was the SMEs that could make meaningful impact in the life of rural dwellers and make them less dependent on others, adding that the bank focuses mainly on SMEs that have element of export, saying that NEXIM bank is focused on export-oriented SMEs.
*Phillip Oladunjoye-Daily Independent