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How To Get CBN’s N60 Billion SME Fund As Nigerian Youth, Small Business Owner

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has allocated N60 billion to support small businesses, particularly those led by young individuals. This initiative, known as the Agri-Business/Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS), aims to empower Nigerian youth and stimulate economic development.

What is AGSMEIS?
AGSMEIS is a government program aimed at bolstering small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the agricultural sector. It provides financial assistance and resources to assist young entrepreneurs in launching and expanding their agribusiness ventures.

AGSMEIS offers numerous advantages:

Easier Access to Funding: The program simplifies the process of obtaining loans for young Nigerian entrepreneurs.
Job Creation: By supporting youth-led businesses, AGSMEIS contributes to job creation within the agricultural industry.
Sustainable Agriculture: AGSMEIS promotes environmentally friendly farming practices, ensuring the sustainability of agriculture.
Boosted Agricultural Value Chain: By supporting businesses throughout the production process, AGSMEIS strengthens the agricultural value chain.
Enhanced Management Skills: The program provides training opportunities to enhance the management skills of young agri-business owners.
Are you eligible?
To determine if you qualify for AGSMEIS funding, consider the following criteria:

Your business must be registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
Compliance with tax regulations and timely submission of tax returns are mandatory.
You must be prepared to apply for the loan through a participating bank.
What are the next steps?
If you meet the eligibility requirements, follow these steps to apply:

Training: Complete a mandatory one-week training course at a certified Entrepreneurship Development Institute (EDI).
Apply Online: After training, submit your loan application online through the NIRSAL Microfinance Bank (NMFB) portal, using your EDI completion certificate.
Review and Interview: NIRSAL MFB will forward your application to the CBN for review. You may be contacted for an interview regarding your business plan.
Loan Approval: Upon approval, the loan amount will be disbursed directly into your NMFB account.
Important Notes:
Loan amounts and terms vary.
Equipment purchases will be facilitated by authorized NMFB vendors.
Working capital will be accessible from your NMFB account upon meeting all conditions.

1. What types of agribusinesses are eligible? AGSMEIS supports a wide range of agribusiness activities, including crop production, livestock farming, aquaculture, poultry farming, and agro-processing.

2. Is there an age limit for applicants? While the program targets young entrepreneurs, specific age criteria have not been publicly disclosed. Contacting the CBN or NIRSAL MFB for clarification is recommended.

3. How much funding can I apply for? Loan amounts vary based on business needs and available funds. Consultation with a participating bank is advised to determine the appropriate amount.

4. What are the interest rates on AGSMEIS loans? Interest rates are typically lower than commercial loan rates. The exact rate depends on the chosen bank and loan terms.

5. Is there support available after receiving the loan? Some participating banks may offer mentorship or business development services to AGSMEIS beneficiaries, although this is not guaranteed by the program.

6. Where can I find more information? For detailed information and updates on the AGSMEIS program, visit the CBN website or contact NIRSAL MFB. Participating banks can also provide guidance on the application process.