FG will take another fresh external loan of $ 247 . 3 m

The Federal Government will take another fresh external loan of $ 247 . 3 m for the development of infrastructure , despite the country’ s rising debt profile .

The Federal Executive Council made the approval at its sitting in Abuja on Wednesday.

It came just days after the International Monetary Fund raised eyebrows over Nigeria ’ s current N 24. 38tn debt , advising the country to take borrowing slowly .

Briefing State House correspondents after the meeting rose , the Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Ahmed , gave a breakdown of the fresh loan .

She stated that $ 150 m would come from the African Development Bank, to be spent specifically on rural electrification projects ; $ 50m from Africa Grow Together Fund for other electrification projects ; and $ 20m from French Development Agency , which would be loaned to the Lagos State Government .

Lagos plans to use the $ 20 m to build new roads and rehabilitate existing ones.

Another $ 27 . 3 m IADE facility was approved as part of the ‘ North Core Dorsal Regional Transmission Project . ’

This will be part of the West Africa Power Pool projects with a total loan requirement of $ 640 m .

The minister explained that the projects were to connect Nigeria , Niger, Benin Republic , Togo , and Burkina Faso “with a high voltage 330 kilowatts transmission line, to facilitate energy trade among participant countries . ”

The minister, who gave more details on the approvals by FEC, said , “ Council approved three memos for Ministry of Finance. First , it approved a $ 150 m loan facility from AfDB and $ 50m loan from African Grow Together Fund to finance the Nigerian electrification project .

The project is a nationwide initiative to be implemented by the rural electrification agency .

“ The project aligns with the strategy of the Federal Government on electrification of rural communities .

The project has four components : First is solar hybrid mini – grid for rural economic development , the second is productive appliances equipment for up – grid communities , and the third is energising education while the fourth component is institutional capacity building.

“ The impact of the project when fully implemented , about 500 , 000 people will be able to have access to electricity for about 105 , 000 households.

The maximum power that will be generated will be 76 . 5 megawatts installed generating capacity part of which is 68, 000 megawatts of solar .

“ Eight universities will benefit from this scheme and about 20, 000 small, micro, medium enterprises across different communities in the nation .

“ The second approval is the North Core Dorsal Regional Transmission Project.

This is a project that is part of the pipeline for the West Africa power pool priority projects .

The intention is for the creation of a regional power pool in the region of West Africa .

The pool project aims to connect Nigeria , Niger, Benin Republic, Togo, and Burkina Faso with a high voltage 330 kilowatts transmission line, to facilitate energy trade among participants .

“ The project is in the total sum of $ 640 m , out of which each of the four countries involved has a component .

Nigeria has the smallest component in this pact , which is a total loan of $ 27. 3 m IADE facility , a concessionary loan .

This is a loan that the four countries are taking together; the other three countries have concluded theirs. So , this is one of the final stages for

Nigeria to conclude its process . ”

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