President Muhammadu Buhari is requesting for the National Assembly’s authorization to borrow additional $4 billion ($4,054,476,863) and €710 million from bilateral and multilateral organizations to cover the budget deficit in 2021.
The loan request is an addition to the 2018-2020 borrowing plan, according to the president in a letter to the Senate.
He also requested that $125 million in grant components be approved by Congress.
His appeal was contained in a letter read out before the start of session on Tuesday by Senate President Ahmad Lawan.
Mr Buhari went on to say that the need for extra money stems from the “increasing needs” of some “essential projects.”
“I write on the foregoing topic and submit the accompanying amendment to the proposed 2018-2020 external rolling borrowing plan for the Senate’s review and approval before it becomes effective.
“The distinguished senate president may recall that in May 2021, you made a proposal to the senate for approval of the 2018-2020 borrowing plan.
“However, in light of additional pressing demands and to guarantee that all important projects approved by the FEC by June 2021 are included, I am submitting an amendment to the proposed borrowing plan.
Part of the letter said, “The projects specified in the external borrowing plan will be financed by sovereign loans from the World Bank, French Development Agency, EXIM Bank, and IFAD totaling $4,054,476,863 and €710 million, respectively, and grant components of $125 million.”
When the loans are acquired, the president claims that they would stimulate the economy and generate jobs.
His latest loan proposal comes only two months after the National Assembly accepted his earlier request for $8.3 billion in loans and €490 million in loans as part of the initial borrowing plan for 2018-2020.
The lawmakers had said the needed funds were meant for projects geared towards the realisation of the Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan that cut across key sectors such as infrastructure, health, agriculture and food security, energy, COVID-19, among others.
With the current $1 to N550 exchange rate, the new loan of $4 billion will amount to about N2.2 trillion.