President Muhammadu Buhari has sought an approval of an external loan of $5.5 billion from the Senate to enable the Federal government to finance this year’s budget.
Buhari’s request for external borrowing to the tune of $5.5 billion is contained in a letter to the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki, which was read on the floor of the Senate, Tuesday.
In the letter, $3 billion would be sourced through Euro bond; the remaining $2.5 billion would come from other sources in the international capital market.
It would be recalled that 2017 budget is predicated on a debt deficit of N2.1 trillion which Federal Government hopes to secure from both local and external sources to fund the country’s infrastructure deficit.
Kemi Adeosun, Minister of Finance and Udoma Udo Udoma, the Minister of National Planning and Budget had, last week during a meeting with the Senate Joint Committee on Finance and Appropriations, appealed to National Assembly for an urgent resolution for the external borrowing.
The ministers explained that the loans have become imperative for Nigeria to fix such priority projects as roads, power and National Security.
Last week too, the Senate had stepped down the recommendation of its Committee to consider the issue of external borrowing for the executive on the grounds that it was yet to receive any formal request in that regards.