Finance Minister, Edun, gives further clarification on $1.5bn World Bank loan

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The Federal Government said on Monday that it has obtained two loans to finance various projects in important economic sectors, one from the African Development Bank for $80 million and one from the World Bank for $1.5 billion.

Wale Edun, the Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance made this disclosure during a media briefing with State House correspondents in Abuja.

He noted that the FG would get $1.5 billion in total before the end of the year if it kept up its end of the bargain.

The Minister also revealed that Nigeria was deemed eligible for the “relatively cheap” loans because of its “macro-economic moves” over the previous months since President Bola Tinubu took office.

Edun explained, “Council approved today the application for financing from the World Bank. And in particular, the International Development Association, which is the virtually free or zero-interest lending arm or financing arm of the World Bank.

“The total is $1.5bn. The world today is one of the high-interest rates as the developed world looks to fight inflation. They do it by restricting money, and keeping interest rates high so that you can get inflation down.

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“That means that interest rates for everybody else becomes not just high but very painful, if not unaffordable within that context.”

Edun clarified that Nigeria took macroeconomic moves and tough decisions to restore balance in its economy, warranting support from multilateral development banks.

“The bold, brave, courageous and decisive measures that Mr President has taken are being rewarded by processing for Nigeria $1.5bn of immediate financing, which, provided that we do everything on our side, will be in before the end of the year.

“It is based on that the World Bank is willing to consider and to process on our behalf $1.5bn of concessional financing, relatively cheap financing and financing that will be dispersed relatively quickly.

“And it comes in one go. It doesn’t drip as will be done for a project and is just to support the reform effort. And that was what was presented to the Federal Executive Council, and the members approved that we go ahead with that financing given that it is affordable,” Edun explained.

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