A former Deputy Governor of the CBN, Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, has called for the establishment of a “Bank for Women” to boost women enterprise in the country.
Moghalu made the call at the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria 2018 Annual Lecture on Friday in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the theme of the lecture is: “Of Banks and Bankers: Finance and the Challenge of Economic Development in Nigeria”.
He said that 46.6 percent of Nigerian women lacked access to financial services, despite the fact that they were highly productive.
Moghalu urged the banking sector to do whatever it could to establish the bank, to facilitate wealth creation by women.
The ex-CBN chief described Nigerian women as enterprising, better borrowers and loan payers than men.
He also argued that that overexposure to the oil and gas sector had aided non-performing loans when the value of the oil and gas sector dropped.
Moghalu said that reforms by the CBN to buy non-performing loans and aid financial stability had proved unsuccessful.
He said: “So out of the little credit left, over 77 percent was concentrated in Lagos, sidelining, women in rural communities.
“No economy can sustain inclusive growth under such circumstance and this would lead to infrastructural epilepsy.”
The President of the CIBN, Uche Oluwu, noted that Nigeria currently faced serious economic challenges.
According to him, there are still notable gaps in the country’s development, despite exiting economic recession in 2017 after five consecutive contractions.
Oluwu said: “These gaps, according to the National Bureau of Statistics’ report on the macroeconomic indicator, revealed that unemployment rose steadily to 18.8 percent in third the quarter of 2017 from 13.9 percent in the third quarter of 2016.
“Infrastructural deficits and alarming low literacy rates are pointers to deep deficient human capacity development among others, plaguing the great nation.”
He charged the banks, through their wealth creation, to play significant roles in allocating resources for infrastructural development.
Olowu applauded banks for their support for Micro, Small & Medium Sized Enterprises.
He said: “However, I plead with our banks to be resolute in supporting MSMEs across various productive sectors of the economy and the adjoining value chains.”