Zenith Bank, UBA, 18 others disburse N607.87bn  to farmers

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Story by Kayode Tokede

A total of 20 commercial banks disbursed an accumulative sum of N607.87 billion to farmers under the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme (CACS) as at April 2019 ending.

The apex bank in its economy report for April noted that  total amount repaid to these commercial banks stood at N345.06 billion.

The top five commercial banks disbursement revealed that Zenith bank with N122.66 billion has the highest amount disbursed with N73.23 billion total repaid amount, followed by United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) with N83.06 billion total amount disbursed as at April with N51.52 billion repaid.

Sterling Bank plc recorded N72.17 billion amount disbursed with N26.68 billion repaid while, First Bank of Nigeria Plc recorded N52.52 billion amount disbursed with N36.19 billion repaid.

In addition to the top five disbursement in the period under review, Keystone bank recorded N30.05 billion disbursed under the CBN’s CACS scheme.

Suntrust Bank ltd has the lowest disbarment with N1.85 billion followed by Jaiz bank Plc with N2 billion disbursement as at April , 2019.

The report by CBN also revealed that under the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme (ACGS) a total of N342.7 million was  guaranteed to 2,022 farmers in April 2019.

The economic report stated that, “The amount represented an increase of 98.0 per cent and 22.1 per cent over the respective levels in the preceding month and the corresponding period of 2018, respectively.

“Sub-sectoral analysis showed that food crops got the largest share, amounting to N184.7 million (53.9%) guaranteed to 1,217 beneficiaries, followed by livestock, N48.3 million (14.1 per cent) guaranteed to 191 beneficiaries.

“The sum of N42.6 million (12.4per cent) was guaranteed to mixed crops sub-sector, in favour of 329 beneficiaries. Cash crops, fisheries and „others  received N29.8 million (8.7 per cent), N26.5 million (7.7 per cent) and N10.8 million (3.2 per cent), guaranteed to 189, 55, and 38 beneficiaries, respectively.

“Analysis by State showed that 25 states and the Federal Capital Territory benefited from the Scheme in April 2019, with the highest and lowest sums of N46.6 million or 13.6 per cent and N0.6 million (0.2 per cent) guaranteed to Ogun and Kogi states, respectively.”

Reporting about the general agricultural sector, the CBN noted that “Weather conditions in the Northern States were relatively drier during the month of April 2019. Consequently, agricultural activities in the region were mainly preparation of land for the 2019 wet season farming.

“However, the southern States experienced improved moisture as a result of the commencement of early rainfall, which led to planting activities in the region. In the livestock sub-sector, herders continued with the migration of cattle to Southern States in search of greener pastures, while poultry farmers re-stocked birds to replace sales during the Easter festive season.

“Also, in a bid to control the spread of the contagious Bovine Pleuro Pneumonia (CBPP) cattle lung disease, which broke out in Kaduna State, infecting 1,850 cattle and killing 367 herds, the Kaduna state government immunised 215,000 cattle in the affected areas.”

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