$2.2 Billion Nigerian Loan Approved By World Bank

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The $2.2 Billion loan for six (6) projects to support Nigeria’s development priorities has been approved by World Bank.

According to NAN, the bank said on Wednesday 19th February, 2020 that the projects would be focusing on improving immunisation and providing an enabling business environment for private sector. The approved programme of support includes; Immunisation Plus and Malaria Progress by Accelerating Coverage and Transforming Services.

The projects will strengthen health systems to deliver effective primary health care and improve immunisation, malaria control, and child and maternal health in selected states.

The project is designed to improve vaccination coverage; the percentage of children under five who sleep under insecticide treated nets from 28 per cent to 41 per cent, and improve the percentage of women who receive post-natal check-ups from 47 per cent to 55 per cent.

It affirmed that the project was financed under concessional terms through an International Development Association, with credit of $650 Million.

“Nigeria Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project will upgrade rural roads and improve connectivity and access to local markets and agrobusiness services in 13 states.

Particularly, the project will upgrade about 1,600 kilometres of rural roads and improve 65 agro-logistics centres. These interventions are expected to increase by up to 10 per cent the proportion of the population living within two kilometres of an all-season road.

It is financed through an IDA credit of $280 million, co-financing of $230 million dollars from the French Development Agency and $65 million from the Government of Nigeria,’’ the World Bank said in the statement.

“Nigeria Digital Identification for Development Project will support the National Identity Management Commission to increase the number of persons who have a National Identification Number, reaching about 150 million in the next couple of years,’’ it added. It further stated that this would enable people in Nigeria, especially marginalised groups, to access welfare-enhancing services.

It explained that the project would also enhance the ID system’s legal and technical safeguards to protect personal data and privacy. This is financed through an IDA credit of $115 million and co-financing of $100 million from the French Agency for Development and $215 million dollars from the European Investment Bank.

The Ogun State Economic Transformation Project will catalyse private investment in the state by improving the business-enabling environment, strengthening agri-food value-chains and upgrading skills.

Among some of the key results, the project will support the issuance of 15,000 Certificates of Occupancy, facilitate off-taker arrangements with agribusinesses for up to 40,000 farmers.

It will also improve STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics), teaching in up to 70 per cent of public secondary schools, financed through an IDA credit of $250m.

Innovation Development and Effectiveness in the attainment of Skills Project will strengthen the skills of 50,000 Nigerian students and enhance the capacity of technical teachers to better equip them for jobs in the formal and informal sectors.

The scheme will increase female enrolment rate from 13 percent to 23 percent in technical colleges and provide recognised skills and certification to 3,000 youths after completing an informal apprenticeship.

“This is financed through an IDA credit of $200m,’’ World Bank added.

It added that the projects would also capture expansion of the digital economy to promote job creation and increase capacity of public and private sector on governance, social and environmental safeguards.

These projects are focused on delivering better services to Nigerian citizens. This means ensuring that children are immunised and sleep under mosquito nets.

They are also aimed at improving rural mobility with better roads, and providing citizens with a unique identification number to be able to better target social safety nets.

The Apex Bank stated that it is also ramping up its support to Nigeria in its efforts to elevate 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.

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