The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) and Bank of Industry on Wednesday in Lagos launched a $US50 million dollars fund for NOGAPS Manufacturing Product Line.
According to a statement by NCDMB,the fund is to incentivize companies that would operate in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Parks and engage in the manufacturing of equipment components used in the oil and gas industry and linkage sectors.
Speaking at the signing, the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote mentioned that the fund would support oil and gas companies that would operate in the oil and gas parks developed by the Board in Bayelsa and Cross River State.
He said the fund will only be accessed by companies that take up spaces in the park to procure equipment or build their manufacturing shopfloor within the park.
Wabote pointed that the NOGAPs Manufacturing Fund is different from the initial $300m fund being managed by BOI with five product lines which aims at supporting Nigerian businesses that contribute their one percent to the Nigerian Content Development Fund.
“The decision of the Board to establish the product was informed by the peculiarities of the manufacturing sector, which include infrastructure challenges, long gestation, long lead time before returns, low margins on products, and high risk attached to the endeavor, in addition to the reluctance of commercial banks to lend to the sector and application of stiff collateral and eligibility criteria where loans are extended.”
On the criteria for accessing the NOGAPS manufacturing funds, the executive secretary said that, unlike Nigerian Content Intervention Funds, which requires companies to be contributors before they can benefit, the NOGAPS fund can be accessed by companies that will be domiciled and will manufacture their products within the parks.
He said: “The Fund will provide loans to Nigerian companies that meets the criteria to operate in any of the designated NOGAPS Industrial Park for the purpose of financingmanufacturing activities, purchase of fixed assets, working capitals and logistic. Beneficiaries will get a maximum single obligor of $3m and minimum of single obligor of $250,000.00with one year moratorium repayable within five years at fivepercent interest per annum.”
On the incentives available in the NOGAPS park, Wabote disclosed that the rate for accommodation is reduced, power is guaranteed, and the rent will only begin to count when the company commences manufacturing.
In his remarks, the Managing Director, Bank of Industry, Mr. Olukayode Pitan applauded the Board for being a partner in progress. He noted that the fund will further help promote in-country manaufacturing as well as creation of employment.
He charged Nigerian companies to harness the opportunity to pick up space within the park to produce locally.
On the sideline of the event, the two chief Executives signed a supplementary memorandum of understanding for the $300m Nigerian Content Intervention Fund for extension of the agreement