FCMB Plc seeks agric sector’s support on economic growth

First City Monument Bank (FCMB) Nigeria has urged stakeholders in the agriculture and power sectors to deepen access to renewable sources of energy to fast-track and sustain growth.

The Executive Director, Finance at FCMB, Mrs. Yemisi Edun, stated this in her keynote address at a conference organised by the bank on Energy-Agric Nexus for Rural Economic Development, with theme: “Stimulating the Agricultural Sector through Off-Grid Energy Development” in Abuja.It was held in partnership with the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), The European Union, Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP), Heinrich Boll Stiftung (HBS) Foundation and Power for All.

Edun said the bank’s decision to organise the conference was based on its commitment improved energy access. It is to engender a sustainable future for businesses, homes and individuals for overall national development.

She said off-grid power systems which are integral parts of solar, biomass, hydro and small wind power systems, offer veritable solutions to the challenges faced by most businesses, including the agric sector in Nigeria. This is because they utilise locally available renewable resources to provide electricity, particularly to the rural areas where bulk of farming activities take place. In addition, they are more cost-effective than extension of the national grid network.

Also speaking at the conference, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Rural Electrification Agency, Mrs. Damilola Ogunbiyi, said the agency has developed an off-grid electrification strategy, which focuses on decentralised off-grid solutions and captures several elements, such as solar stand-alone systems, solar mini grids, energizing economies initiative and energy database.

Mrs. Ogunbiyi, who was represented by the Executive Director, Rural Electrification Fund, Sanusi Ohiare, stressed that, “we are committed to collaborate with other public and private sector bodies to harness and expand the opportunities in the energy and agric sectors. We are excited that FCMB has shown tremendous support in this direction”.

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