FG Releases N100bn Consumer Credit Fund to Manufacturers

FG Releases N100bn Consumer Credit Fund to Manufacturers
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu

The Federal Government (FG) says it will provide the sum of N100 billion through a consumer credit fund to support the manufacturing sector. Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, Sen. Atiku Bagudu, said this while briefing newsmen on clarifications on the implementation of 2024 Appropriation Act, in Abuja on Thursday.

Bagudu, who noted that the manufacturing sector was facing serious challenges, said that the fund would help to revive the sector. “Our economy can gain if many people can pay for goods and services over a period of time just as it’s being done around the world. And it will help our manufacturing sector.

“Consumer credit is a veritable tool to provide access to goods and services to a lot of Nigerians. A committee is working on this. It has not been implemented. The money has not been withdrawn; the fund is a catalytic fund, and it’s expected to grow,” he said.

The minister said that government was also providing N100 billion for the agriculture sector. He said that the fund was supposed to attract more funding so that the mortgage industry would grow bigger.

Bagudu further stated that government had equally made available N100 billion Energy Transition Fund to support the provision of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) vehicles. He said that when fuel subsidy was removed, government quickly provided N100 billion to support the provision of CNG vehicles which would consume less gas than fuel.

Bagudu added that a total of N60 billion had also been provided as student loan. He said that although N50 billion was captured in the budget, another N10 billion was appropriated in the supplementary budget. He said that the fund was part of efforts to cushion the effects of hardship on students.

“There was a N10 billion provision in the supplementary budget. Right now, we have N60 billion of student loan in the two budgets. We believe that our students should have an additional option,” he said.

The minister said that the federal government had also made provision for Youth Development Fund and the Project Preparation Fund. He used the opportunity to douse the tension surrounding the alleged padding of the 2024 budget to the tune of N3.6 trillion.

According to him, the word, ‘padding’ is a tautology and it’s now seen in negative form. He said that while the constitution allowed the president to present a budget document to the National Assembly, the national assembly, on the other hand, had the right to add or subtract from the budget.

“In fact, the National Assembly has the last word when it comes to appropriation. So, they have the right to increase budget line,” he said. The minister, however, said that when the constitutional rights were performed by the national assembly, it should not be seen as padding.

“When people talk about padding, the word has been narrowed to a negative form. Whereas in reality, there can be no appropriation without either addition or subtraction,” he said.

Bagudu said that the president submitted to the national assembly a consolidated revenue fund of N27,503,404,073,861, adding that the legislative body authorised a consolidated revenue fund of N28,777,404,073,861. #FG Releases N100bn Consumer Credit Fund to Manufacturers