The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says it has provided over N85 billion to no fewer than 80 projects, under its Healthcare Credit Support scheme, the bank’s Director of Development Finance, Yila Yusuf, has said.
In an interview with agency reporter on Wednesday, in Abuja, Yusuf said that the projects cut across medical, pharmaceutical, herbal and other related products, and a funeral home.
He spoke against the backdrop of the apex bank’s award of N253.54 million Healthcare Sector Research and Development Intervention Scheme (HSRDIS) grants to five researchers on Tuesday.
“In the healthcare credit support scheme, we have disbursed over N85 billion to more than 80 projects, mainly to reposition and enhance capacity of hospitals and pharmaceutical companies. We even financed a funeral home,’’ he said.
He said under the HSRDIS, an impaneled body of experts, chaired by Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, Director General of National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), received over 200 research entries, evaluated 68 and picked the best five entries for the grants.
He added that more grants would be awarded, as entries continued to be evaluated, while the grants were being disbursed on a “milestone basis’’, rather than as a “bullet payment’’.
“Godwin Emefiele, the CBN Governor, has restated the apex bank’s commitment to support the growth of Nigeria’s health sector, while assuring that more grants will be awarded based on the recommendations of the Body of Experts,” Yusuf said.
He urged corporate organisations to support research and development for the overall good of Nigeria.
According to agency report, the CBN approved N100 billion credit support scheme for the healthcare sector in 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.