Senate Approves $500 Million Loan for BPE’s Metering Project



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The Senate has greenlit President Bola Tinubu’s loan request of $500 million for the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) to fund the metering of citizens, aiming to enhance the financial and technical performance of electricity distribution companies. This loan, part of the Nigeria Distribution Sector Recovery Program (DISREP) funded by the World Bank, seeks to address critical infrastructure needs in the energy sector.

Approval Follows Committee Consideration

The approval came following the Senate’s consideration of the report presented by Senator Aliyu Wammako, APC, Sokoto North, who heads the Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debts. The report examined the 2022 – 2024 External Borrowing (Rolling) Plan for the BPE.

Loan Part of Larger Borrowing Plan

This $500 million loan is a subset of the $7.94 billion external borrowing plan initially requested by President Tinubu in November 2023. The larger plan also included a €100 million component. The Senate had previously approved $7.4 billion of the requested amount in a special plenary session on December 30.

Committee Emphasizes Loan Terms

Senator Haruna Manu, Vice Chairman of the Committee, underscored that the terms and conditions of the loan must not compromise Nigeria’s economic growth or sovereignty. He emphasized the need for transparent communication regarding the loan’s purpose and timeline for implementation.

Loan Aligned with Economic Objectives

The loan request aligns with the government’s objectives to enhance the financial and technical performance of electricity distribution companies. It aims to address critical infrastructure gaps and support Nigeria’s economic development goals.

Committee Calls for Fiscal Responsibility

The Committee stressed the importance of complying with fiscal responsibility laws and conducting thorough cost-benefit analyses for all borrowing initiatives. It highlighted the need for careful financial management to mitigate the risk of debt accumulation and ensure sustainable economic growth.

Overall, the approval of this loan represents a step towards improving Nigeria’s energy infrastructure and enhancing the welfare of its citizens.

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