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Nigerian businesses required to link NINs to access presidential grant

Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investment Implements New Directive Amid Delayed Disbursement

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The Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investment has mandated applicants of the Presidential Conditional Grant Scheme to provide their National Identification Numbers (NINs) as part of the requisite criteria for accessing grants aimed at mitigating the impact of recent economic reforms on businesses nationwide.

Announcing the directive via social media, Trade Minister Doris Aniete underscored the necessity of aligning with new regulations from the Central Bank of Nigeria, which now require Nigerians to link their NINs with their bank accounts.

In a post titled “Update on the Presidential Conditional Grant Programme Application Process,” Aniete outlined the steps for applicants to submit their NINs, emphasizing that verification is crucial for the continuation of the application process.

The post reassured applicants that only verified individuals would receive notifications to submit their NINs, emphasizing the importance of ensuring that the provided NINs match the applicant’s name.

The directive comes amidst prolonged delays in the disbursement of the grant, initially announced by President Bola Tinubu in August 2023 to bolster the manufacturing sector and support small businesses. Tinubu had outlined plans to allocate N75bn between July 2023 and March 2024, with each enterprise eligible for up to N1bn credit at a favorable interest rate.

However, eight months later, the programme, overseen by the Trade Ministry and executed by the Bank of Industry, has yet to reach a significant stage, prompting concerns among prospective beneficiaries. Femi Egbesola, President of the Association of Small Business Owners, lamented the lack of communication regarding the delay, expressing disappointment over the prolonged wait for disbursement.

The move to require NINs underscores the government’s commitment to streamlining processes and ensuring transparency in accessing financial assistance, albeit amid growing frustration over delays in implementation. As Nigerian businesses navigate economic challenges, the timely execution of grant programmes remains critical to fostering resilience and driving sustainable growth.

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