FG approves $20m foreign loan for Lagos transportation plan

Governor Ambode with President Buhari.

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved a loan of $20 million for Lagos State strategic transportation plan.

The money is part of the $247 million loan approval granted at yesterday’s weekly FEC meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The other $227 million loan is for rural electrification and West Africa Power projects.

The Finance Minister, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, who announced the loan approval, said the Lagos transportation project will be beneficial to 1.8 million residents.

Lagos State, she said, has the capacity to repay the loan.

The minister briefed State House Correspondents alongside the Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi; the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister, Bello Mohammed and the Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu.

Mrs Ahmed explained that the nation’s borrowing is still within limit.

She said: “The third loan approval is $20 million, for the Lagos State Strategic Transport Master Plan. This facility is from the French Development Agency. The objective of the project is to improve the living conditions of the inhabitants of Lagos urban area and promote urban development sitting by efficient and effective transport system.

“The project has two major components. The first is to rehabilitate urban roads and the creation of minimum of eight equality bus corridors and the creation of two multi-model inter-changes at Marina and Mile 2. The second objective is to provide technical support for implementation and management.

“When completed, the project is expected to impact 1.8 million inhabitants of Lagos State and accumulative 1.5 million users per day for inter-model inter-changes without about 620,000 boarding at Mile 2 and 480,000 boarding at Marina. Another estimated 630,000 boarding at QBS.

“The project is being undertaken by Lagos State agency, LAMATA, under its own strategy. So, the Federal Government is borrowing to unlearn to Lagos following the same terms and conditions that we signed. Our assessment is that Lagos State has the capacity to repay the loan.”

Also, the FEC approved $150 million loan facility from African Development Bank (AfDB) and $50 million loan from African Grow Together Fund to finance the Nigeria electrification project.

The project, Mrs Ahmed said, “is a nation-wide initiative to be implemented by the rural electrification agency. The project aligns with the strategy of federal government on electrifying rural community”.

She said the project has four components: first is solar hybrid mini-grid for rural economic development; the second is productive appliances equipment for off-grid communities; the third is energising education and the fourth component is institutional capacity building.

“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 (MW) 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 and medium enterprises across different communities in the nation,” she added.

The other foreign loan approval of $27.3 million is for the West Africa regional power project.

The project, the minister said, 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.

She said: “The second approval is the North Core Dorsal regional transmission project. This is a project that is part of the pipeline for the pipeline for the West Africa power pull priority projects. The intention is for the creation of regional power pull in West Africa. The post-project aims to connect Nigeria, Niger, Benin Republic, Togo, Burkina Faso with a high voltage 330 kilowatts transmission line, to facilitate energy trade amongst participants.

“The project costs $640 million 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 million IADE facility. It is 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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