Monday, October 25, 2021

Buhari justifies borrowing spree, says $4 billion loan for 15 projects

The World Bank is to finance seven of the 15 listed projects across the six geo-political zones.

• September 18, 2021
President Muhammadu Buhari

The Muhammadu Buhari regime has justified its recent borrowing of $4 billion, listing a total of 15 projects across Nigeria’s six geo-political zones to be financed with the loan.

Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to Mr Buhari, Garba Shehu, on Saturday in Abuja, said the president requested the Senate to approve sovereign loans of $4.054billion and €710million and grant components of $125million for the projects.

“The President’s request to the Senate listed 15 proposed pipeline projects, the objectives, the implementation period, benefiting states, as well as the implementing Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs),” the spokesman said.

The loan is under the 2018-2021 medium-term (rolling) external borrowing plan.

Mr Shehu said the loans would be sourced from the World Bank, French Development Agency (AFD), China-Exim Bank, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Credit Suisse Group and Standard Chartered/China Export and Credit (SINOSURE).

He said a breakdown of the loan shows that the World Bank is to finance seven projects, including the $125 million grant for ‘Better Education Services for All’.

Nigeria’s debt profile would shoot up further with this loan request from Mr Buhari.

Last May, Mr Buhari requested a loan to finance the N5.6 trillion 2021 budget deficit.

Also, the Senate had approved $1.5 billion and €995 million external borrowings in April, which were part of the $5.5 billion and €995 million external borrowings sought for by the president in May last year.

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