FEC approves more external borrowings

FEC approves more external borrowings
September 01 05:29 2016

By Abdulrahman Abdulraheem

The Federal Executive Council has approved a new three-year borrowing plan for strategic sectors of the economy.

Briefing State House correspondents after Wednesday’s meeting, Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun said the borrowing plan which will be transmitted to the National Assembly for its approval will be concessional loans average with interest rates‎ 1.25 percent, four to seven year moratorium and 20 years to pay.

The Minister disclosed that the borrowings would come from agencies such as the World Bank, African Development Bank, China EXIM Bank, and other development agencies like Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Eurobonds.

She cited the case of the Ministry of Solid Minerals, which had already procured a World Bank loan of $150million to enable it to strengthen its capacity and generate revenue from the sector.

The Council also approved a new roadmap for solid minerals which seeks to grow the mining sector for a better GDP for the country.

Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Kayode Fayemi, explained that what distinguishes the new roadmap from the previous one, is its determination‎ to build a regulatory agency – an independent regulatory agency in the mining sector.

He added that there would now be mining cadastral zonal offices saddled with the responsibility of issuing licenses together with the mining inspecting directorate, mining environment compliance unit as well as the nautical mining units.

In his contribution at the briefing, Minister of  Education, Adamu Adamu, announced that FEC approved contracts for ‎the construction International House for the University of Ibadan (UI), which is a post-graduate ‎hall, at the cost of N1.302 billion with a completion period of 44 weeks.

Also approved was contract for the reconstruction of the University of Lagos (UNILAG) new library‎ at the cost of N1.935 billion.‎

The Minister Agriculture, Ogbeh, disclosed that FEC had renewed the contract of a service provider for the technology platform, e-wallet for the delivery of seeds and fertilizer and capturing the database of farmers in every local government in the country.

He recalled that the e-wallet is a programme of the past administration which he said ran very well in 2012 and 2013 “but had few hitches as the agric ministry got involved in trying to select the providers.

He said the development led to the incurring a controversial debt of N67 billion with another quotation of N884.7 million by the company, which had been renegotiated to N380.5 million.

“They will work with us for one more year, teach our people how to do it, domicile the data of farmers which is 20 million of them and continue to work on how to get agriculture inputs to farmers and keep away those who tend not to deliver but make claims,” he said.