The Federal Government has diclosed that Nigeria is set to secure a multi-billion dollar infrastructure funding package from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB).
Ajuri Ngelale, presidential spokesperson, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday.
Ngelale said the deal was brokered during a meeting between President Bola Tinubu and Mansur Muhtar, IDB’s vice-president (country programs), in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, on Monday night.
Ngelale said the funding would be deployed to finance a multi-sectoral portfolio of infrastructure projects at the federal and sub-national levels in Nigeria.
These sectors also include port infrastructure, power infrastructure, and agro-allied facilities that will enable sustainable food security in the country.
“Nigeria is the candle of hope that will light the way for Africa. And once Africa is illuminated, the world will be a brighter place for all of humanity. We are determined to create a future for our gifted youths,” the Ngelale quoted Tinubu as saying.
“Investments in Nigeria will be among the world’s most high-yielding. Investor money will flow easily in and out of our country. Processes will be seamless and your bank has always been a faithful partner in progress.
“We have serious deficits in port infrastructure, power infrastructure, and agro-allied facilities that will enable sustainable food security in our country.
“These deficits present an unrivalled opportunity for savvy investors in a market that is by far the largest on the continent. Yes, we had the vision to enable Lekki deep seaport before others saw it. We must be bold again.
“We inherited serious liabilities, but also assets from our predecessors. We do not make any excuses. There are several sectors replete with investment opportunities for smart investors.
“Access to finance and guarantees can be a hindrance in some cases. You can come in there. We see you as a critical enabler. You have partnered with us before. We want to scale it up now and do much more with greater ambition and clear vision.”
On his part, Muhtar said the financial world has been monitoring events in Nigeria and has concluded that Africa’s largest economy means business this time.
“Mr. President, we know you inherited a very tough set of circumstances. It is to your credit that you have taken very bold steps without delay,” Muhtar was quoted as saying.
“We are ready to work with you. We are ready to support big investments in Nigeria. We agree that if Nigeria succeeds, Africa succeeds. And the world needs Africa to succeed.”
According to Ngelale, the IDB president announced the provision of $50 billion of new investment for the African continent from the Arab Coordination Group (ACG).
He said the announcement was made at the Saudi-Arab-African economic summit, adding that Nigeria, as the largest market and the largest economy in Africa, would receive a significant share.
Muhtar also said the bank looks forward to supporting Nigeria’s economic transformation.
Nigeria lost N1.3trn due to waivers by Buhari’s administration – Customs
The comptroller general (CG) of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Adewale Adeniyi,
says waivers and concessions granted to investors by the administration of Muhammadu Buhari, former president, cost the country N1.3 trillion.
Adeniyi said customs would have generated more income for Nigeria’s consolidated revenue fund in 2023 without the waivers and concessions arrangements.
The CG said this at the national assembly on Wednesday during a public hearing on the 2024–2026 medium-term expenditure framework and fiscal strategy by the senate joint committees.
Adeniyi, represented by Mba Musa, the deputy comptroller general, said “the NCS lost N1.3 trillion in 2023 due to waivers and concessions the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration granted to investors”
The revelation led Sani Musa, the chairman of the joint committee, to request the senate to probe the waivers and concessions granted by the previous administration.
“By now we shouldn’t be talking about concession for cement manufacturers, we should not even be talking about sugar importation,” Sani Musa said.
“We should not deny ourselves the revenues that we should generate to make our economy vibrant. By now, we should be consolidating on waivers given to boost revenues.
“We would review the waivers and make our recommendations. By now, you (NCS) should be meeting up on your projected target if there are no waivers.”
The senate also quizzed the NCS on its modernisation project, known as e-customs.
During the hearing, the senators asked for the details of the agreement signed by the federal government on the modernisation of Nigerian customs.
In response, Adeniyi said the service does not have access to details of the $3.2 billion modernisation project agreement.
“We are not privy to details of modernisation agreement of the Nigeria Customs modernisation project,” he said.
In April, the federal executive council approved the customs’ modernisation project.
The approval was made despite a court order restraining the federal government from going on with the initiative.
Wale Tinubu, Dangote, Wale Edun, Obaigbena others attend Nigeria-Saudi Business Forum
Serial entrepreneur and Group Chief Executive, Oando Group, Jubril Adewale Tinubu was among top dignitaries present at the first Nigeria-Saudi Arabia Forum which was part of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s effort to boost and strengthen the economic and business ties between the two countries.
Others at the forum include top Nigeria’s business magnates, ministers and many government functionaries such as president of Dangote Group; Alhaji Dangote, Group Managing Director Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC); Mele Kyari,
Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy of Nigeria; Mr. Wale Edun, Minister for Trade and Investment, (Dr) Doris Uzoka-Anita, Chairman THISDAY Media Group and ARISE News Channel, Nduka Obaigbena, among others.
Speaking during the forum President Tinubu assured potential investors that their investments are safe in Nigeria.
President Tinubu said Nigeria is ready for business while assuring investors of some of the world’s highest returns on investment.
The President said Nigeria is desirous of enhancing collaboration with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on combating terrorist organizations such as Boko Haram, ISWAP, and other violent extremist groups which have been terrorizing the Lake Chad and Sahel regions.
“Nigeria and Saudi Arabia have always enjoyed a special relationship at both the bilateral and multilateral levels. Within the past six decades, our bilateral cooperation, which was initially hajj-centric, has witnessed diversification to cover a number of areas of common interest. It is delightful to note the presence in this great Kingdom of a large number of our compatriots and professionals, including highly-skilled medical practitioners and professional football players.
“As members of several international organizations including the UN, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, the International Energy Forum, the G77, the Islamic Development Bank, the Digital Cooperation Organization among others, our two nations have effectively used these and other platforms to enhance close interaction and coordination. I am confident that our joint positive disposition within these platforms will continue to be demonstrated as we seek to advance our mutual interests.
“Nigeria, like the Kingdom, is diversifying her economy away from oil dependence to promote sustainable development. My administration has undertaken bold economic reforms by removing wasteful subsidies on petroleum and the merging of our foreign exchange market, among other incentives aimed at improving the ease of doing business in Nigeria.
“I also wish to assure all potential Saudi investors of the safety of their investments based on the sanctity of the rule of law and good returns on their investments in the largest economy in Africa. In this regard, the benefit attached to the early inauguration of the Nigeria-Saudi Business Council can not be over-emphasized,” the President said.
President Tinubu thanked the Kingdom for the various humanitarian interventions in Nigeria through the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre.
BREAKING: Old naira notes will remain legal tender indefinitely, says CBN
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says the old naira notes will remain legal tender beyond December 31, 2023 — and no longer have a deadline.
CBN said this in a statement signed by Isa AbdulMumin, director, corporate communications, on Tuesday.
More to follow…
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