President Bola Tinubu has sought the approval of the Senate for the 2022–2024 external borrowing plan of $7.8 billion and €100 million.
Mr Tinubu’s request was contained in a letter addressed to Senate President Godswill Akpabio, and read at plenary on Wednesday.
Mr Tinubu said in the letter that the past administration had approved the 2022–2024 borrowing plan at the Federal Executive Council on May 15.
He said, “Following the removal of fuel subsidy and its impact on the economy in the country, the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the World Bank Group have indicated interest in assisting the country in mitigating the economic shocks and its recent reforms.
“While the AFDB will assist the country with the sum of one billion dollars, the World Bank will give two billion dollars in addition to the Federal Executive Council’s approved 2023–2024 external borrowing plan.”
In view of the economic realities facing the country, it has become imperative that the country resort to prudent external borrowing to breach the financing gap, which will be applied to key infrastructure projects including power, railway, and health, amongst others, given the nature of these facilities.
Mr Tinubu said the projects are due to be utilised with the fund cut across all sectors, with specific emphasis on infrastructure, agriculture, health, education, water supply, security, employment generation, and financial management reforms.
The president added that the projects and programmes in the plan were selected based on technical and economic evaluation and their expected contribution to the social and economic development of the country.
He listed the areas to include employment generation, skills acquisition, supporting the emergence of more entrepreneurs, poverty reduction, and food security to improve the livelihood of an average Nigerian.
He said the projects and programs would be implemented in all 36 states of the Federation and the FCT.
“In view of the economic realities facing the country, it has become imperative that the country resort to prudent external borrowing to breach the financing gap, which will be applied to key infrastructure projects including power, railway, and health, amongst others, given the nature of these facilities.
“In a quest to bring the country to normalcy, it has become exigent to request the senate’s consideration and approval of the 2022–2024 external borrowing plan to enable the government to deliver its responsibility to Nigerians through expeditious disbursement and efficient project implementation,” Mr Tinubu explained. (NAN)