The Nigerian government has continued to foster an enabling environment for the farming sector. In recent times the emergence of the agrotech industry has extended the opportunities of agriculture to more people who are willing to invest in the agricultural sector.
Despite government efforts as well as improved investment opportunities in the agricultural sector, many farmers and investors still have challenges accessing agricultural loans in Nigeria. Given this problem, we have highlighted a few ways you can access an agricultural loan in Nigeria below.
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT LOANS
The currently available federal government loans include:
1. CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA (CBN)
CBN provides loans for existing and intending farmers at a low annual interest rate. In the last decade, the CBN has injected over 100b into the agricultural sector and has made the fund available to all states through the Bank of Agriculture and other commercial banks
These are the kind of loans the CBN offers to farmers and investors alike
2. THE COMMERCIAL AGRICULTURE CREDIT SCHEME
The Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme was established in 2009 to speed up the development of the agricultural sector; enhance national food security; reduce the cost of credit in agricultural production. Many commercial banks have access to this scheme and give loans at a maximum of 9% interest rate. The fund is also available to state governments for on-lending to farmers.
To be eligible for this agric loan, you’ll have to partake in this produce:
Livestock, Cash crops, food crops, poultry, aquaculture, processing, marketing, storage of agrochemicals, and supplies of farm input.
3. REAL SECTOR SUPPORT FACILITY
This is another initiative of the Central Bank of Nigeria. The Facility will support large enterprises for startups and expansion financing needs of N500 million up to a maximum of N10. 0 billion.
One of the real sectors being targeted is the agricultural sector, and farmers and investors can take advantage of that.
The tenure of the loan is up to 15 years, and the interest rate is quite low. The basic requirements to access this type of loan are;
- A business plan
- Certificate of incorporation
- Apply formally
- Memorandum and Article of Association
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4. MICRO SME DEVELOPMENT FUND
On August 15, 2013, the CBN launched the MSME Development Fund, with a share capital of N220 billion. 90% of the fund was made available to Participating Financial Institutions-PFIs- at 2% for on-lending to MSMEs at a maximum interest rate of about 9% per annum.
One of the eligible beneficiaries of this fund is farmers and investors in the agricultural sector. So if you need a credit facility to expand your agri-business, this could help.
5. Bank Of Agriculture (BOA)
Formerly Nigerian Agricultural Bank and incorporated in 1972, The Bank Of Agriculture has evolved over the years in its service to the agricultural sector. The federal government of Nigeria owns it while the Federal Ministry of Finance CBN is an investor.
To get access to this loan, you’ll need the following essentials:
- Present a complete plan for your business
- Have available, a 20% partial payment of the loan.
- You should have at least a six-month relationship with the bank in terms of making payments into your account no matter how small
- Also, you need to provide evidence of a physical collateral
BANK OF AGRICULTURE PRODUCTS
- Micro Credit loans
- Grow and earn more-(gem)
- Loan application for SME (Individuals)
- Lastly, loans from commercial banks:
6. Private And Non-government Organisation Commercial Banks
Another source of funding is from commercial banks, and they can offer you loans based on your preference. They have long, short, and medium-term loans infused into different products. Basically, these loan products have different criteria, and some are unique to the institutions offering them. Examples of such banks include First Bank, Access Bank, Stanbic IBTC, Union, and UBA.
The basic requirements for obtaining a loan from any commercial bank may vary, and they include the following but are not limited to;
- You should have an existing account with any of them.
- You’ll be required to apply and then present an application for the loan
- You should have made a 10% partial payment of the loan.
- Collateral will have to be presented.
- Lastly, present a complete plan of your business along with a business’ viability study.
7. Agricultural Co-operative Societies
If you are part of any co-operatives, there is a great chance of receiving grants provided by some banks.
Here are the requirements:
- Be a member of one of the co-operatives
- Apply to the bank with the letterhead of the co-operative which appended by one of its representatives
- Lastly, you need to present a viability study on the business plan
If you don’t know which co-operative to join, here are some:
- All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN);
- Youth Empowerment in the Agricultural Program (YEAP);
- Also, FADAMA
Farmers and Agricultural SMEs also have access to lenders focused on agricultural loans to help take their business to the next stage.
These ways to get access to agric loans in Nigeria will be perfect for Nigerians that want to either start up a business in agriculture or expand their existing operations.
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