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.
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 reiterated that 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 new fund would be a stand-alone product line with distinct fund allocation and special eligibility criteria and collateral structure. According to Wabote, ”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 hinted that unlike that Nigerian Content Intervention Funds which requires companies to be contributorsbefore 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.
Pitan pointed that the interest rate will help companies to easily access the product and payback. “The interest rates are very good just like the initial fund which is less than ten percent and the same thing will apply to this one. All we are looking for are Nigerians who want to manufacture in Nigeria.”
He charged Nigerian companies to harness the opportunity to pick up space within the park to produce locally.
The Board established the NCI Fund in 2018 with the purpose of financing Oil and Gas companies to increase capacity and grow Nigerian Content in the Industry Presently, the NCI Fund has five product lines which are being managed by the Bank of Industry. They include – Manufacturing Finance -$10m; Asset Acquisition Finance -$10m; Contract Finance -$5m; Loan Refinance -$10m and Community Contractor Finance – N20 million.
The Board also has a US$30 million Working Capital Fund for oil and gas service companies and US$20m Fund for Women in Oil and Gas Intervention Fund. The last two facilities are administered by the Nexim Nigerian Export-Import Bank and the agreements were signed in mid-2021.
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.