President Jonathan seeks Senate’s approval of $7.9 bn loan

Channels Television  
Updated February 15, 2012

President Goodluck Jonathan has asked lawmakers to approve his bid for a $8 billion loan which he says will fund pipeline projects between 2012 and 2014.

President Jonathan seeks Senate's approval of $7.9 bn loan

Jonathan says he is looking to develop Africa’s largest energy industry, a part of his administration’s transformation agenda.

In a memo to the Senate and the House of Representatives, details of the loan were explained. President Jonathan plans on obtaining $7.91 billion (N1.3 trillion) in low interest credit facilities, which will be provided by the World Bank, African Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank, Exim Bank of China and Indian lines of credit.

In his 2012 Budget speech, President Jonathan had vowed prudent spending and had pushed for policies that will bring an end to the country’s borrowing habits.

However, if approved by the lawmakers, the loan is set to raise Nigeria’s debt profile, which as of September last year sat at $40 billion (N6.3 trillion).

Finance minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala had told lawmakers recently that until the 2012 budget received approval, sourcing for funds through loans will be inevitable, but promised borrowing will be done at a “manageable level”.

Lawmakers said more details of the loan will be revealed during a debate that will look into the merits, or lack thereof, of the $8 billion loan