Bankers Committee Reviews Impact of COVID-19 On Economy, Announces Support Packages


Saturday, March 21, 2020 / 04.00PM / Ottoabasi Abasiekong for WebTV / Header Image Credit: EcoGraphics


Major pharmaceutical companies like GSK, Emzor, Fidson, Neimeth, Orange Drugs, amongst others will be granted Naira and FX funding facilities, to support procurement of raw materials and equipment required to exponentially increase local drug production in Nigeria. Other companies are Neimeth, Swiss Pharma and Dana Pharma etc. 


The loan arrangements were part of the decisions taken by the Bankers Committee comprising mainly CEOs of Nigerian banks after its meeting with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Mr. Godwin Emefiele. 


The meeting discussed the significant health and economic crisis caused by the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) which had resulted in escalating worldwide infections, deaths, disruptions in global supply chains, travel restrictions and turmoil in the international financial markets. 


The Committee further noted that the policy responses across governments and central banks around the world including the CBN. 


Part of the resolution was an increased collaboration between the CBN and the banking industry with a coherent strategy to provide confidence to customers, counterparties, and the general public. 


The Committee resolved that profit will not be the primary motive at this time, rather preserving confidence, financial stability and support for the economy will be the present overriding objectives. 


In line with this thinking further engagements would be held with correspondents banks, trade creditors, and trading partners, regarding existing letters of credit (LC) and trade commitments. 


The industry is committed to resolving these commercial obligations in a comprehensive and orderly way. It reassured the stakeholders of transparent and open communication with all trading parties.


Also looking at the disruption of the global supply chains, the Committee advised Nigerians and companies to begin prioritizing their import needs and focus more on sourcing raw materials and inputs locally. 


The committee noted the success of the CBN's 43 items policy and encouraged the strengthening of measures targeted at export promotion and/or import substitution to position Nigeria as a key global manufacturer. 


It also discussed the N3.5trn stimulus plan of the CBN to reduce the adverse impact of the COVID-19 health pandemic on the local economy. 


The Committee said top priority will be given to the local health industry.  

Click Here to Download Bankers Committee Communique - March 21 2020 PDF Report


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