The Central Bank Governor (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele, on Thursday, June 5, 2014 unveiled his agenda for the apex financial organization, announced that all charges on deposits of customers at banks are abolished with immediate effect while that charges on withdrawals will be eventually eliminated. He made this known at a maiden briefing to outline his policy focus as the new Governor in Abuja
His core focus is to gradually lower interest rates and cut inflation to single digits.
“There is no doubt that reducing interest rates and maintaining exchange rates are very daunting twin goals,” Emefiele said.
The CBN under his leadership aims to maintain exchange rate stability and aggressively shore up foreign exchange reserves; strengthen risk-based supervision mechanism of Nigerian banks to ensure overall health and banking system stability among others.
On the agenda for development finance, he said the core principle is that the CBN will act as a financial catalyst by targeting predetermined sectors that can create jobs on a mass scale and significantly reduce our import bills.
On small scale businesses and entrepreneurship the CBN will also design a programme for our fellow citizens who need loans as low as N50,000 without collateral through registered and accredited local cooperatives. He says CBN shall encourage venture capital companies and business angels to fund SMEs and invite the Bankers’ Committee to play more active role in supporting SMEs.
“ The CBN would deploy developmental initiatives to create an enabling environment with appropriate incentives to empower innovative entrepreneurs to drive growth and development. It is important to stress here that the CBN would not be targeting individual companies but rather specific sectors. We would establish rules and criteria that create a level playing field so that anyone who fairly qualifies can benefit from these schemes,” he said.
He expects to make it cheaper to borrow to invest but this would have to wait until conditions allowed, he said, and did not offer a specific time frame.