Senate moves to approve Buhari’s request for N2.3trn loan

The Senate, on Tuesday, asked its Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, led by Senator

The Senate, on Tuesday, asked its Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, led by Senator Clifford Ordia to look at President Muhammadu Buhari request on the implementation of the External Borrowing of N2.343 trillion ( about $6.183billion) in the 2021 Appropriation Act.

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, had last month, read on the floor of the Senate a letter from President Buhari dated May 6, 2021, in which he sought the lawmakers’ formal approval to part-finance the Budget Deficit of 5.602 trillion in the 2021 Budget.

Unveiling the target of the fresh loan being proposed, President Buhari disclosed that “the proceeds of the USD6.183 billion (82.343 trillion New External Borrowing in the 2021 Appropriation Act) will be used to fund specific Capital Projects in the Budget.

“This includes projects from priority sectors of the economy, namely: Power, Transportation, Agriculture and Rural Development, Education, Health, Provision of Counterpart Funding for Multilateral and Bilateral projects, Defence and Water Resources.”

He further revealed that the fresh loan would be raised from a combination of sources; namely: multilateral and bilateral lenders, as well as from the International Capital Market (ICM) through the issuance of Eurobonds.

The Senate mandated the Committee on Local and Foreign Debts to submit its report within 14 days.

Tribune Online investigation revealed that the same Committee last April approved $1.5 billion and €995 million for financing various priority projects of the Federal Government and to support the state governments facing fiscal challenges.

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