AFDB approves $1bn loan for Nigeria

Ebun Francis

Nigeria’s quest for the needed funds to meet the deficits in the 2016 budget received a boost today with the announcement that The African Development Bank(AFDB) has approved $1 billion loan for the Country at 1.2 percent interest rate. Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina,  AFDB president disclosed these to State House correspondents after meeting with Vice President and other members of the Economic Management Team (EMT) at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Dr Akinwunmi said the bank is in Nigeria, its largest shareholder to offer its strong support to the country as it faces tough time.

In his words: ” African Development Bank (AfDB), we have a very strong delegation team to meet Vice President and the economic management team. The bank’s largest shareholder is Nigeria. It is very important for me to be here and to talk to the Nigerian government about the challenges and opportunities that are in Nigeria.

“I think the times are difficult and there is no doubt about that. But I want to commend the government for being bold in taking the right decisions. I think that the fact that the price of crude oil has gone down, is a big challenge because you have 98 per cent external forex revenue coming from the sector.

“So it has created calibrations, I’m not going to go into the details of all the problems but what is important is what we are going to do about it.

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“I’m not here to lecture the Nigerian government. I’m here to support very strongly. We have said that we are going to support the Nigerian government with the budget support to be able to deal with some of fiscal imbalance that they have. We are looking to consider for an award of $1 billion to help to deal with that particular deficit.”

It will be recalled that Nigeria’s Finance Minister, Mrs Kemi Adeosun last week stated that the country was looking at various options to raise needed funds to finance the deficits in the 2016 budget.