The Godwin Emefiele led Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has approved the sum of N2 billion to the Imo State government for the empowerment of artisans in the state.
The Commissioner for Labour and Productivity, Ford Ozumba, disclosed this to newsmen on Tuesday in Owerri, while announcing the Imo 2022 Entrepreneurial Product Expo in partnership with CBN.
He said the Imo State government approached the CBN and was considered qualified to get the approval for the CBN loan.
The Commissioner explained that; “The project was conceived to expose artisans of the state origin to trade, assist them to use their knowledge to migrate into the digital socio-formation, create structures and systems that would engage the youths into productive sectors as well as for them to train others to alleviate poverty and contribute in the efforts to improve the economy of the state.
“The money is in partnership with CBN, the CBN has approved N2billion for Imo State. The money is not with us. It is in the bank. It will be disposed to youths in the trade. It is a loan from the CBN. The CBN has a facility for this project. We approach them and they said Imo was qualified. The money will be given to artisans. These artisans are already made.
The artisans have associations we are working with So, as part of the activities for this project, we have a project starting on the 10th of May 2022, a weekly event, the first Imo State innovation and entrepreneurial exhibition in Owerri.
“The state is blessed with several talented artisans and accomplished industrialists whose products such as solar energy and cold rooms compete favourably with foreign products but which are not exposed to the outside world for patronage.
“We want to put our people on exhibition to showcase their talents, skills, ingenuity and creativity and with a well designed structured technology to expose this to the international community. They would be motivated to export their products and help our economy to grow,” he said.
The state’s artisans have been advised to seek professional direction from their account officers on best way to access the loan.