The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has unveiled N15 trillion Infrastructure Fund to be operated under the new InfraCorp Plc, which will boost funding for capital projects.
Emefiele, who disclosed this on Tuesday in Abuja at the annual banking and finance conference organised by the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), said InfraCorp would take care of the deficit in infrastructure funding because of the dwindling oil earnings.
InfraCorp, which will be launched in October, the CBN governor said, was conceptualized by the apex bank alongside African Finance Corporation (AFC)and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority to address the challenge of infrastructure deficit in the country.
According to him, “In this regard, I am pleased to announce that InfraCorp, the infrastructure company being created by the CBN, African Finance Corporation and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority to raise N15trn, will be unveiled in October, 2021.
“InfraCorp would enable the use of mostly private capital to support infrastructure investment that will have a multiplier effect on growth across critical sectors.
“The purpose of the N15tn being raised is to address some of our infrastructure needs, while providing reasonable returns to investors.
“We believe this well-structured fund can act as a catalyst for growth in the medium and the long run. The support of the banking community will be important in achieving this objective.”
He assured that Nigerian banks have become not only strong and resilient, but have also carved a good niche in the world.
He said the Central Bank will establish the Nigerian International Financial Centre (NIFC) in 12 months in order to consolidate on the gains in the sector in the last decade, especially regarding growth and resilience of Nigerian Banks.
Specifically, he explained that NIFC will act as an international gateway for Capital and investments, driven by technology and payment system infrastructure.
He also spoke on the National Theatre creative hubs for “our youths as well as the E-naira project, which will also debut in October 2021,” saying, “NIFC will take advantage of our existing laws such as the BOFIA 2020, NEPZA and other CBN regulations to create a fully global investment and financial hub where monies, ideas, and technology will move freely without hindrance.”
He explained that this new financial hub will curate local and international banks to make them global champions, adding that “NIFC will be a 24/7 Financial centre that will complement London, New York and Singapore financial centers and enable an acceleration of Nigeria’s home grown initiatives such as the Infracorp Plc.
“The NIFC will also complement the CBN’s initiatives on the Nigerian Commodity exchange and the
National Theatre creative hubs for our youths as well as the E-naira project which will also debut in October 2021.
“The NIFC will take advantage of existing laws such as the BOFIA 2020, NEPZA and other CBN regulations to create a fully global investment and financial hub where monies, ideas, and technology will move freely without hindrance.”
He explained that a robust payment system has continued to evolve towards meeting the needs of households and businesses in Nigeria, saying, between 2015 and 2020, close to $500m worth of funds have been invested in firms run by Nigerian founders.
He assured that the CBN was targeting a 15 per cent inflation rate and a annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of between 2.5 – 3.0 per cent at the end of the year.