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AfDB: We’ve supported Nigerian MSMEs with over $1bn

Akinwumi Adesina AFDB on infrastructure Akinwumi Adesina AFDB on infrastructure

The African Development Bank (AfDB) says it has provided over $1 billion in interventions to 20,500 micro, small and medium enterprises in Nigeria.

Akinwunmi Adesina, president of AfDB, said this at the African Small and Medium Enterprise Immersion Fund Roundtable organised by Access Bank Plc in Lagos on Thursday.

According to Adesina, the interventions have contributed to the creation of more than 440,000 jobs in Nigeria, with women and youths accounting for 60 percent.

Adesina was represented by Lamin Barrow, director-general of the Nigeria Country Department, AfDB.

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He said the bank had also inaugurated the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa.

“In Nigeria, the bank has eight active LOCs targeting SMEs valued at $1.1 billion. Our interventions have supported over 20,500 MSMEs and have contributed to the creation of over 440,000 jobs, with women and the youth accounting for 60 percent,” he said.

“The bank has also launched the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa as a flagship initiative to close the $42 billion access to finance gap for women-led and owned SMEs. Through AFAWA, the bank will facilitate up to $5 billion in credit access to women SMEs by 2026.”

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The AfDB president said MSMEs employed about 77 percent of the workforce in Nigeria — dominated by women who faced greater challenges in accessing affordable finance and non-financial services due to gender biases in property rights limiting their ability to collateralise loans.

He further said the growth of MSMEs had been constrained by many factors, including poor access to affordable finance, perceptions of high default risk due to key man risks, information asymmetries and other challenges related to their informality.

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