The Nigerian Senate resumed on Tuesday and almost immediately got to work giving an accelerated hearing to an N850bn loan request from President Muhammadu Buhari and approving it.
The president had asked the National Assembly for the loan in a letter to the legislative body which was read by the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan.
The N850bn is expected to be raised from the capital market as the government finds the international market unfavorably because of the Coronavirus outbreak.
The letter read, “Furthermore the senate may wish to know that the borrowing from the external capital market increases Nigeria’s external reserves, provides access to lower cost and as well as avoids crowding out of private sector borrowers who wish to access the domestic capital market.”
He said “However, recent developments in the global economic environment as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the decline in international oil prices has made it less attractive to borrow from the international market at this time.”
“To ensure that there are adequate funds to finance critical projects and programmes in the 2020 budget. I hereby seek the senate’s approval by resolution to raise the N850 billion of new external borrowing in naira from the domestic capital market instead of the international capital market.”