UK Offers Nigeria £750m Infrastructure Funding

By Ikenga Chronicles March 7, 2018

UK Offers Nigeria £750m Infrastructure Funding

The United Kingdom’s Department for International Trade (DIT) has made available about £750m to support infrastructural projects in Nigeria.

In a statement on Tuesday the DIT added that provision of the facilities through the UK Export Finance, the country’s export credit agency could also be made available.

To ensure effectiveness, it said loans could be extended in the local currencies of nine African countries for projects ranging from transportation, mining and general construction.

However, the UK body gave a condition that at least 20 percent UK content must be included in the project after all other lending criteria has been met.

The UK’s Trade Commissioner for Africa, Emma Wade-Smith, stated, “For example, the UKEF has the ability to support infrastructure projects in South Africa (up to £4bn), Kenya (up to £1bn ) and Nigeria (up to £750m).

“Africa’s infrastructure challenges not only inhibit its ability to trade with the rest of the world but are also a significant obstacle to intra-African trade, both of which are critical to the continent’s economic growth agenda.”

He described finance as a critical component of infrastructure development, adding that “the combined risk appetite of £21.4bn we have across the region to facilitate projects is a clear sign of the UK’s belief in Africa’s long-term economic growth trajectory.”

“But in terms of capacity, we have the ability to provide significant funding for infrastructure projects across Africa,” he added.

According to him, there is enormous scope for Africa to boost its exports to the UK and other parts of the world if it can address its infrastructure backlog.

“The research shows that in the long-term, trade is better than aid and without adequate infrastructure, it will be very difficult for Africa to boost its ability to buy and sell with the rest of the world,” he noted.