President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday sought the National Assembly’s approval of a fresh loan of $4.1bn and Euro 710million to finance critical projects in the 2021 budget.
He also requested the legislature’s nod for a grant of $125million to fund the budget which is being awaited by the National Assembly.
The sums are contained in Buhari’s letter read by Senate President Ahmad Lawan to members of the upper legislative chamber at plenary. The members resumed yesterday after a two-month annual vacation.
According to the President, the request is an addendum to the proposed 2018 – 2021 Federal Government External Borrowing Rolling Plan earlier approved by the National Assembly.
He explained that the projects are listed in the addendum to the 2018 – 2021 Federal Government External Borrowing Rolling Plan. They are to be financed through loans from the World Bank, French Development Agency, China Exim Bank, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Credit Suisse Group, among others.
The President’s letter to the Senate was titled: “Addendum to the request for Senate’s concurrent approval of multilateral fund projects under the 2018-2021 Federal Government external borrowing (rolling) plan.”
It reads: “I write in respect of the above subject and to submit the attached addendum to the proposed 2018-2021 Federal Government external borrowing (rolling) plan for the consideration and concurrent approval of the Senate for same to become effective.”The distinguishing Senate President may wish to recall that I earlier transmitted a request on the proposed 2018-2020 Federal Government External Borrowing Plan for the concurrent approval of the Senate in May 2021.
“However, in view of other emerging needs and to ensure that all critical projects approved by FEC as of June 2021 are incorporated. I hereby forward an addendum to the proposed borrowing plan.
“The projects listed in the addendum to the 2018-2021 Federal Government External Borrowing Rolling Plan are to be financed through sovereign loans from the World Bank, French Development Agency, China Exim Bank, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Credit Suisse Group and Standard Chartered/China Export and Credit (SINOSURE), in the total sum of $4,054,476,863 plus Euro 710,000,000. and grant component of $125,000,000.00.
“The Senate is kindly invited to note that the projects and programmes in the borrowing plan were selected based on positive, technical and economic evaluations and the contribution they would make to the socio-economic development of the country including employment generation and poverty reduction as well as protection of the most vulnerable and very poor segments of the Nigerian society
“The Senate may also wish to note that all the listed projects in the addendum form part of the 2018-2021 External Borrowing Plan and covered both the Federal and States Government Projects and are geared towards the realisation of the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan that cut across key sectors such as infrastructure, health, agriculture and food security, energy, education, and human capital development and COVID-19 response efforts.
“A summary of some key projects in each of the six geo-political zones and a summary of the expected impacts on the socio-economic development of each of the six geo-political zones are attached herewith as Annex II and III
“Given the importance attached to the timely delivery of the projects listed in the proposed Borrowing Plan and the benefits both the Federal and state governments stand to gain from the implementation of the same.
“I hereby wish to request for the kind consideration and concurrent approval of the Senate for projects listed in the addendum to the 2018-2021 Federal Government External Borrowing (Rolling) Plan to enable the projects to become effective.”