The African Development Bank (AfDB) is working on giving Nigeria loan facilities of $4.1bn between now and next year for critical sectors of the economy. The loan which is in different categories include $1bn at a concessionary interest rate of 1.2 per cent for Nigeria to address the 2016 budget deficit and aid her economic recovery.
The AfDB President, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, revealed this after a meeting with the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, and other members of the Economic Management Team (EMT) in Abuja.
According to the AfDB president, the package includes; $1bn in budget support, $300m to create jobs for 185,000 youths, $250m towards infrastructure development in the North-East, $1m grant to deal with challenges of Internally Displaced Persons, $300m for infrastructure development around Abuja, and $200m for the Transmission Company of Nigeria to improve its facilities, among others.
The AfDB president who is on his first official visit to Nigeria, since he took office in September 2015 said “I am not here to lecture the Nigerian government. I’m here to support the country. We have said that we are going to assist the Nigerian government with the budget to be able to deal with some of fiscal imbalance that they have. We are looking to consider an award of $1 billion to help deal with that particular deficit.”
Also speaking, the Finance minister, Kemi Adeosun said there was no need to fear over the new loan as it would be put into good use, adding that the government was not over-borrowing.
She added, “And as Dr. Adesina said, we are looking unto them with $1bn budget support; but beyond that, there are lots of loans and initiatives around agriculture, job creation for the youths, solid minerals, women empowerment and women’s access to finance, and access to finance by the SMEs.”