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World Bank approves $2.1bn loan for Nigeria to support investments

World Bank approves $2.1bn loan for Nigeria to support investments

The World Bank has approved $2.1 billion loan for seven projects to support Nigeria’s investments in key sectors of the economy.

A statement by the bank’s spokesperson, Olufuke Olufon, in Abuja on Thursday revealed that the loans were approved to support Nigeria’s investment in nutrition, access to electricity, states’ fiscal transparency, polio eradication, women’s economic empowerment, public finance and national statistics and reducing vulnerability to soil erosion.

World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, Rachid Benmessaoud, said the Federal Government’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) identified human capital investment, restoring growth, and building a competitive economy as its key pillars.

The projects were approved by the International Development Association (IDA), the bank’s low-interest arm.

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The World Bank said more than half of the loans would be used to fund power and climate change projects and boost fiscal transparency. It also approved a $7 million grant for nutrition.

“The World Bank Group (WBG) has extended its country partnership strategy for Nigeria until June 30, 2019.

“During FY2018 and FY2019, the WBG support will focus on revenue diversification and mobilization, addressing the binding constraints for attracting private financing, and improving social services delivery for building the human capital needed for inclusive economic growth, in alignment with the economic recovery and growth plan,” the statement read.

Last month, a World Bank delegation, comprising of 10 Executive Directors of the bank, visited Nigeria to discuss the bank’s ongoing projects and the country’s development priorities with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun and some governors.

The group had in the 2017 fiscal year, committed $1.51 billion to the country. The group had also spent $486 million on different development projects across the country.

Amongst the projects are; Electricity Transmission Project, Agro-Processing, Productivity Enhancement, and Livelihood Improvement Support Project, Polio Eradication Support Project and Housing Finance Development Programme.

 

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