Loan request: Senate approves Buhari’s $5.5bn external borrowings

Senate

The Senate on Tuesday approved the request by President Muhammadu Buhari to approve Federal Government’s move to secure two external borrowings totalling $5.5bn.

The approval was sequel to the adoption of a report by the upper chamber’s Committee on Local and Foreign Debts at the plenary.

Buhari, in a letter dated October 4, 2017, had said the external borrowings had been captured in the 2017 Appropriation Act, which has a deficit of N2.356tn and provision for new borrowings of N2.321tn.

The letter read in part, “Accordingly, the Senate is requested to kindly approve the following external borrowings: Issuance of $2.5bn in International Capital Market through Eurobonds or a combination of Eurobonds and Diaspora bonds for the financing of the Federal Government of Nigeria’s 2017 Appropriation Act and capital expenditure projects in the Act.

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“Issuance of Eurobond in the ICM and/or loans syndication by the banks in the sum of $3bn for refinancing of maturing domestic debts obligations of the Federal Government of Nigeria, while looking forward to the timely approval of the National Assembly to enable Nigerians to take advantage of this opportunities for funding.”