West and North Africa

FEC approves $300m Diaspora bond for Nigeria

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The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the floating of a $300 million bond for Nigerians in the Diaspora.

This is just as the government has also approved the floating of N80 billion Global Depository Notes (GDN) to create opportunities for foreigners desiring to invest in infrastructural development in Nigeria.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, coordinating minister for the economy and minister of finance, announced the approval in Abuja while briefing State House correspondents in company of Labaran Maku, the minister of information, after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan.

“The size of the bond will be anywhere from $100-$300 million and the idea is to help Nigerians in the Diaspora invest in infrastructure development in the country so that most of them can see and feel what they are investing in.

“Now, we are asking for approval to appoint all the consultants and the transaction parties as we call them who will be able to assist us on this bond. Very few countries have been able to float a Diaspora bond successfully. The best two examples are Israel and India”, Okonjo-Iweala said.

She said the Federal Government will be working with several international and also local organisations some of which include Goldman Sachs, Arnold and Port, Stanbic IBTC, Olaniwo and Ajayi, Banwo and Ighodalo etc.

The minister also disclosed the ratification of an earlier approval for the Ministry of Finance to take a loan of $170 million given by the French government to undertake 270km transmission line in the FCT and additions to power infrastructure.

She disclosed that Abuja being one of the fastest growing cities in Africa, the loan which is given at concessionary interest rate

f 1.56 percent and with 0.5 percent, will assist government provide the much needed power for the city.

“The concessionary loan which was sourced from the French Development Agency has a moratorium of 7 years period and an interest rate of 1.56 percent with repayment period of 20 years”, she said.

Explaining the modalities for the loan agreement which was signed by President Goodluck Jonathan and French President Francois Hollande during the latter’s visit for the Centenary celebration, the minister said the loan is to assist in increasing transmission base in Abuja.

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