The COVID-19 pandemic has millions of Nigerians fearing for their lives and health. However, it’s also impossible to ignore the huge toll the coronavirus will take and is already taking on the financial situation of Nigerian citizens. Here is everything you need to know about the coronavirus relief package in Nigeria.
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1. What is the COVID-19 stimulus package?
Over the course of the past few weeks, we have seen numerous countries in Europe, as well as the US, introduce various relief packages for families and businesses who have been affected financially by the pandemic. The packages can take the form of monetary assistance or food and necessities supplied to the families in distress.
It’s no secret that the Nigerian government does not have the financial means to give out free money to the citizens whose well-being has been negatively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. That is why the Central Bank of Nigeria has recently rolled out its Targeted Credit Facility, or TCF, program.
The TCF program is designed for individuals and businesses who have suffered a significant decline in their financial status as the result of the pandemic and the subsequent lockdown. This is a simplified loan program that allows you to easily borrow money without standing in long queues at the bank.
2. Who can apply?
The Targeted Credit Facility initiative covers three categories of potential borrowers:
- Households whose livelihood has been severely affected by the pandemic and who have proof of the pandemic impacting their financial state;
- Micro, small, and mini businesses whose operations suffered from the spread of COVID-19 and the lockdown;
- Enterprises who have bankable plans to develop their businesses further through the opportunities provided by the pandemic.
Depending on which category you belong to, you can get a different amount of money as a loan. For example, households can borrow up to ₦3 million. For MSM businesses, the size of the loan will be calculated based on a few financial parameters and can amount up to ₦25 million. Enterprises will receive a loan whose size will be based on the average annual turnover for the past three years.
3. How to apply
If you want to take out a loan through the Targeted Credit Facility, the good news is that you don’t need to go anywhere to apply. You can apply for the loan using your PC, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. To apply to a loan and find out more about the offer, you can visit the COVID-19 section of the NMFB (NIRSAL Microfinance Bank) website.
There you will find an application form for every category of the borrowers with detailed guidelines on how to apply. You need to provide evidence of your finances being affected by the coronavirus pandemic. After you submit your application, the application will be reviewed by the NMFB and then sent to the Central Bank of Nigeria for the final approval. In case the application is approved, the NMFB will handle the disbursement process further.
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