The Federal Government through the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development on Sunday says it has successfully completed its pilot disbursement of loans totaling N165,700,000.00 to 239 beneficiaries of the Nigerian Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) ahead of the processing of the over three million applications so far received.
According to a statement from the Ministry, the Fund, approved by the Federal Executive Council on July 22, 2020, is being implemented in partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria, Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning and disbursed through the Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL) Microfinance Bank – NMFB.
Application data showed that a total of 3,120,107 have registered for the NYIF Pre-Assessment/Training to benefit from the N75 billion three-year financing for youth owned businesses and ideas.
Of the about 1000 processed as part of the pilot disbursement, a total of 94 were disqualified from the NYIF loan after training, as a result of existing COVID 19 or AGSMEIS loan that they have benefitted from.
A total of 500 applicants have been invited by NMFB to apply for the NYIF loan after training and successful due process check while loan application by the applicants is at various times and the application is open until the applicants are able to provide all the requirements and complete the process.
Out of he 500 invited for the loan application, only a total of 393 have completed the loan application process and applied for the loan out of which a total of 293 applied early and their loan was processed and sent to CBN for approval at a total sum of N191, 700.000.00.
On approval by CBN, a total of 239 have been successfully disbursed at a total sum of N165,700,000.00.
Explanation provided to the Ministry by NMFB gave reason for the disbursement to only 239, out of 293, as being because transfer failed to the account numbers of the affected applicants, due to the type of their account that does not receive deposit beyond a certain sum and system failure. These will be contacted and the process repeated.
The relatively low number of trained beneficiaries compared to the number of applications was as a result of the non-availability of funds as there was no budgetary provision for the exercise in the year 2020, which compelled the Ministry to provide the training within its existing capacity instead of using Entrepreneurship Development Institutes (EDIs).
The Ministry will scale up the number of applicants being trained once it onboards EDIs now that it has funds for training in the 2021 budget. The increased number of training will begin as soon as late January.
However, the process announced by the Ministry showed that applicants that have been screened for basic KYC and confirmed as not presently benefitting from similar initiatives from government would be invited to submit business proposals, following which those whose proposals meet the requirements for the loans would be selected for the free training and then be given the loans ranging from N250,000 for individuals to N3,000,000.00 for registered businesses.