Unity Bank Plc has won the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) 2018 Sustainable Banking Award, clinching it for “Sustainable Transaction of the Year in Agriculture’’.
The bank said on Monday in Lagos that it won the award at the just-concluded Bankers’ Committee in Lagos for its compliance with the sustainable banking principles as it relates to the management of environmental and social risk.
It said it got the CBN commendation for its efforts in promoting the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP), Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) and the role it played in the actualisation and management of the ABP project.
According to the bank, its active involvement in various financing schemes has resulted in creating huge social and economic impact on the income of households involving over 270,000 participating small holder farmers.
This, it noted, boosted not only the gross domestic product but also helped to achieve self-sufficiency in food production.
The Managing Director of Unity Bank Plc., Tomi Somefun, dedicated the award to all farmers and businesses in the agriculture value chain.
“We have successfully on-boarded over 90,000 hitherto financially excluded farmers and generated bank verification number for them to facilitate financial and banking transactions.
“Capacities of about 60 agro input suppliers were expanded through provision of facilities and financial advisory services,” it said in statement.
“Unity Bank’s environmental and social management programme covers comprehensive business operations that minimise adverse impact on the environment in the scope of its business activities.
“The code of corporate governance requires companies to act in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.
“Unity Bank has domesticated the principles in its commitment to save the environment from degradation or pollution.”
She said the bank’s environmental management policies and strategies comprehensively covered priority areas that encourage bio-diversity, green initiatives and recycling of waste.
Somefun said others included the reduction of carbon emission geared toward promoting sustainability, conservation and environmental protection.