The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a US$50mn line of credit to Nigeria’s Sterling Bank Plc to support micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs)
The facility, approved by the Bank’s Board, aims to improve the quality of life for Nigeria’s rural population by supporting sectors that affect the livelihood of its population such as agriculture, renewable energy and social sectors including health and education.
The facility intends to increase access to social infrastructure such as healthcare centres, education centres and clean energy plants and to stimulate economic activities in agricultural functions.
It aligns with Nigeria’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan 2017-2020 (ERPG) to promote macroeconomic stability and improved economic performance.
Co-operatives and women-led SME’s will be the largest beneficiaries, which also support Sterling’s strong rural coverage and boost its specialisation in the “HEART” sectors (Health, Education, Agriculture, Renewable energy, and Transportation).
Catherine Cudre-Mauroux, AfDB’s executive director for Germany, Luxemburg, Portugal and Switzerland, said, “This line of credit for Sterling Bank is linked to the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) project of the Bank, this is a positive development.”
The AfDB’s Country Strategy Paper (2013-2017) for Nigeria aims to support the delivery of critical infrastructure development projects and increase access to reliable and affordable financial services to support the transition to green growth.