As part of the celebrations to mark the International Women’s Day (IWD), the Bank of Industry has partnered the African Development Bank (AfDB) to finance women-owned businesses for up to $3billion through de-risking and technical assistance.
This was made known by the Managing Director of the BOI, Olukayode Pitan, in a webinar to mark the IWD. According to him, the funding program is in line with the AfDB’s Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) Guarantee for Growth (G4G) program which assists these businesses technically.
According to Pitan, “The female gender has also been marginalized when it comes to access to finance. The gender financing gap in Africa is believed to be $42 billion between men and women. It is believed that if Nigeria enhances gender equality in the labour market, politics, legal system, education and healthcare, it could add 1.25 percent points to the economy.”
Pitan also announced other collaborations between the BOI and other institutions. He said the BOI has partnered the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to implement the Business Resilience Assistance for Value-adding Enterprise (BRAVE) women Nigeria project.
He also said the BOI has collaborated with Nigerian Content Development & Monitoring Board (NCDMB) to institute the Nigerian Content Intervention (NCI) fund. This fund has allocated $20 million as an intervention fund to women businesses in the oil and gas sector.
According to the NIPC website, ‘…when women win, the society wins.’
Azuka Edokobi is a Writer , a Farmer, a Supply Chain Expert and an Entrepreneur