‘Access to loans still a challenge to Nigerian women in business’

Trader at one of the popular markets in Lagos… PHOTO: AYODELE ADENIRAN

Despite the directive given by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) mandating Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) to borrow 65 per cent of depositors’ money to support businesses in the country, access to loan still remains a major bottleneck to supporting women in businesses in the country.

The Nigeria Country Director, New Faces New Voices (NFNV) Aishatu Aminu, acknowledged Federal Government’s effort to provide intervention funds to support small businesses, but stated that the requirements to obtain these funds are too cumbersome and discouraging to Nigerian businessmen and women.

“We are hoping to bridge gaps in areas of access to finance, gaps in access to markets, gaps to empower our women to be able to compete globally and strengthening the foundation of sister agencies to empower women in the country.

“We are not only focusing on the members of our organisation, but also bringing women from other organisations to benefit from this summit to break the barriers. It was as a result of this challenge that NFNV would be holding a summit scheduled to hold on the 24th and 25th, October, 2019 at NECA house, Lagos”, she added.

According to her, participants from Mali, Senegal, Ghana and Cameroon are expected to grace the two days event.

She added that the organisation has partnered with NAFDAC, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) and the Nigerian Immigration Service to equip them for global trade.

She said NFNV focuses on expanding the role and participation of women in the financial sector while also increasing women’s access to finance and financial services.

“We also want to build the capacity and skills of African women to access finance as consumers, investors and entrepreneurs, increase the number, visibility and influence of women in leadership and decision-making positions in the financial sector,” she added.

She pointed out that NFNV’s research has shown that if the financial and business sectors become more inclusive to women, the result will be a large-scale and fundamental shift in the business and financial landscape across Africa.

She said NFNV is an association of African professional women in finance and business across the continent that is committed to seeing women in Africa assuming key roles in the financial sector and empowering women because of their significant positive socio-economic impact on Africa in all sectors.

In this article:
Aishatu AminuCBNNAFDACNFNV
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