The World Bank has said it is willing to assist Nigeria’s Power Sector Recovery Programme (PSRP) by extending a loan of $1 billion to the country in that direction.
This much was made known in Abuja on Wednesday when the Bank’s officials and federal government counterparts met to agree on necessary steps to be taken for Nigeria to present a request for the facility for consideration by the executive board of the institution.
A statement issued after the meeting, stated in part that, “The World Bank delegation informed the Federal Government that it was pleased with progress in implementing the early actions of the PSRP.
“The World Bank is committed to assisting the Federal Government with programme implementation, working closely with the PSRP Implementation Monitoring Team, which reports directly to the Vice President of Nigeria.
“The World Bank will continue the preparation of the proposed $1bn performance-based loan to support the programme. The Federal Government and the World Bank Group agreed on the necessary next steps to present the PBL to the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors for their consideration.”
The statement also quoted Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, as saying that “This administration is fully committed to implementing the PSRP. We believe that the PSRP is the clearest pathway to reform the power sector and its success is contingent on a strict adherence to performance and programme implementation monitoring, which I will continue to give a priority from my office.
“It (PSRP) is an intervention that we have been working on in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, and the World Bank.”
“We are very confident that this laudable and vital programme will make a fundamental difference in the economy in particular and the country in general,” the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, was quoted to have said.
On his part, Minister for Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, was also quoted to have said that the Federal Government was committed to addressing the challenges in the power sector as part of its efforts towards achieving economic recovery and accelerating growth.
The World Bank said that the discussions it had with the government official demonstrated that there was a strong momentum in the power sector and the government’s commitment to taking the critical next steps that would allow for the presentation of the performance-based loan to its Board of Executive Directors.
The World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, Rachid Benmessaoud, said, “The bank recognises the critical importance of the power sector to private sector financing and investment, and we will continue supporting the government’s effort to implementing its Power Sector Recovery Programme, thereby de-risking the sector for much needed private capital.”