Real estate and construction firms in the country were able to secure loans totalling N2.26tn in eight months, findings by The PUNCH have shown.
The amount borrowed from banks was used as capital to broaden services in the sector.
The loans obtained between November 2022 and June 2023, increased from N1.90tn to N2.26tn representing a growth of 18.9 per cent.
This new figure is despite the decision by the apex bank to increase the benchmark interest rate from 11.5 per cent earlier last year, to 18.75 per cent in June this year, across eight consecutive rate hikes as part of strategies to reduce inflation and mop up liquidity from circulation.
According to the Sectoral Analysis of Deposit Money Banks’ Credit by the Central Bank of Nigeria, the real estate sector secured a loan of N755bn, while the construction industry obtained even more impressive credit facilities worth N1.51tn.
Data from the CBN revealed that borrowing by real estate firms rose from N712bn to N755bn, representing an increase of 44.4 per cent while loans by construction firms N1.19tn to N1.51tn within the same period.
A monthly breakdown showed that N1.80tn was borrowed in December, N1.78tn in January, N1.82tn in February, N1.84tn in March, N1.88tn in April and N1.84tn in May.
The increase in benchmark interest rate had been taking its toll on the country’s economy, worsening its housing crisis. It had also made investors take a watch-and-see approach as the prices of buildings continue to skyrocket.
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