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World Bank Plans N76bn Facility Support for Nigeria

The World Bank planning a development policy operation of $500 million (N75.7 billion) for approval to support the Federal Government's response to the global financial crisis.

Professor Foluso Okunmaduwa, acting country director of the bank gave the indication during the launch of a joint Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Nigeria by the World Bank's Department for International Development (DFID), United States agency for International Development (USAID) and the African Development Bank (AFDB).

The proposed credit is intended to provide budgetary support to the Federal Government to offset the fiscal impact of the crisis and help the government in maintaining its current economic reform path in the financial sector; fiscal policy and management, and governance.

Under the initiative, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private arm of the World Bank, is undertaking initiatives including examination of the capital requirements of selected banks and potential equity investments by the Bank Capitalization Fund, part of the IFC.

Besides the World Bank, the International Development Association (IDA) is providing a financial support of $4.5 million over the period of 2010 to 2011 to 120 million and 140 million pounds per year, AFDB has a loan of UA 80 million in its lending programme while USAID has yet to define its financial envelope.

The CPS which covers year 2010 and 2013 focuses on three themes to transform and diversify Nigeria's economy. The CPS aims at improving governance maintaining non-oil growth and promoting human development identified by the government and re-affirmed in the stakeholder consultations.

The partnership assistance at the federal level will be across three pillars of improving governance, maintaining non-oil growth and promoting human development. In governance, the partnership will continue to support on-going initiatives to strengthen procurement, public financial management, civil service reform and statistical capacity building.

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