Nigeria’s foremost non-interest bank, Jaiz Bank Plc, has received a $25 million shariah-compliant line of financing (LOF) from the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) to support small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.
The deal was signed by Mr Ayman Sejiny, the Chief Executive of the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), the private sector arm of IsDB Group, and Mr Hassan Usman, the Managing Director and Chief Executive of Jaiz Bank.
According to the LOF agreement, this will be done to support the SMEs in Nigeria, including those adversely affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
The contract details indicate that out of the sum of $25 million funds provided, $10 million is allocated under the ICD’s $250 million COVID-19 support package to help the private sector affected by the pandemic by leveraging on the expertise of the banking system of its member countries.
ICD’s line of financing facility will help to expand Jaiz Bank’s customer base by the provision of Shariah-compliant financing in response to a growing demand for Islamic finance to support, among others, COVID-19 affected projects and industries, the statement reads.
Speaking to the agreement, Mr Ayman Sejiny, said, “Continuous cooperation between ICD and Jaiz Bank, the pioneer in Islamic banking in Nigeria, will result in easier access by SMEs to Shariah-compliant financing that will meet their funding needs, as well as assist in keeping businesses open and preserving jobs, which is in line with ICD’s commitments to help the Nigerian economy to overcome the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and strengthen financial inclusion.
“We have no doubt that this line of financing facility will provide much-needed support to private sector businesses including those which have been affected by the pandemic.”
The IsDB Group Strategic Preparedness and Response Facility is part of efforts by the lender to cope with the COVID-19 crisis and to overcome it with a concrete, actionable blueprint. ICD’s geographical outreach across 55 member countries, along with its network of over 100 financial institutions and 5 regional offices and their local linkages, has doubled its collective capabilities and potential to efficiently mitigate the pandemic’s short-term fallout.