The Nigerian Export Import Bank (NEXIM) has explained that the $40million Women in Energy Fund packaged in collaboration with the Nigerian Content Development and Management Board (NCDMB) is a loan, and not a grant.

Providing an update on the administration of the Women in Energy Fund, the managing director of NEXIM Bank, Mr. Abba Bello, said that applicants would need to meet set criteria before they can access the fund.

“It is a loan and not a grant and applicants have to meet the conditions, so we can achieve the intended purpose,” he said. According to him, it takes only 22 days for an application to be processed and an offer letter issued if the company met the criteria.

Last week, the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) announced that it has commenced consideration of applications for the disbursement of the $40million Women in Energy Fund.

NCDMB also confirmed that it has already approved three applications while 12 others were undergoing consideration.

Executive secretary of Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, Engr. Simbi Wabote had confirmed the disbursement of the Fund during the just concluded 2nd Nigerian Women in Oil and Gas Conference, held in Lagos.

According to him, the Board has set aside a minimum percentage of females that must be included in any human capacity development (HCD) programme or any other initiative that it will approve for the Nigerian oil and gas industry.

Wabote further stated that the Board has worked out the women inclusion policy and would communicate it to the oil and gas industry very soon.

The conference was organised by the NCDMB in partnership with the Diversity Sectorial Working Group of the Nigerian Content Consultative Forum (NCCF), which was set up by the NCDMB to advise it on policy directions.

For the purposes of easy access for the $40million Women in Energy Fund, the NCDMB further confirmed that an online portal was launched two weeks ago.

The online portal is designed to speed up the process and ease of application and processing, and in the process reduce human interface in the fund access.

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