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Nigeria Secures ¥15bn From Japan  To Boost Agricultural Scheme Projects

Nigeria’s Finance Minister Wale Edun has described ¥15bn support received from Japan as “essentially free money.”

Nigeria’s federal government has disclosed that it has received the sum of ¥15billion  from the Japanese International Cooperation Agency to support the nation’s National Agricultural Scheme Projects.

Finance Minister and the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Wale Edun made this known on Monday after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Bola Tinubu at the State House, Abuja.

Edun described the intervention as “essentially free money”, as it is given for 30 years, with 10 years moratorium, at only one percent interest rate, adding that the provision is on a bilateral support that will not place any form of strain on Nigeria financially.  

According to him: “There was support for agriculture from the Japanese International Cooperation Agency funding of the National Agricultural Growth Scheme Project, essentially around ¥15 billion for the agricultural sector and it’s essentially free money; 30 years, 10 years moratorium, at one percent interest rate. So, it’s the kind of bilateral support that doesn’t put a strain on Nigeria financially, of course, it helps in the agricultural sector”.

The Minister further disclosed that he informed the Council of President Tinubu’s approval of a request to set up an Economic Management Team Task Force, which will implement major measures aimed at growing the Nigerian economy, increase production and create jobs that will also reduce poverty.

He added that for the next six months the task force, made up of selected members of the Economic  Management Team, the private sector, as well as the representatives of the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF), will work to deal with major issues of monetary and fiscal policies, while ensuring real sector growth.

Adun added that  the Economic Management Team’s Task Force, will be operational over the next six months and report directly to the President while initiatives aimed at growing the economy will be rolled out.

“So currently, we do have the Economic Management Team and of course their work feeds into the Federal Executive Council, National Economic Council and even the Presidential Economic Coordination Council, which is the highest body for economic coordination, chaired by Mr. President himself, with the Vice President as his vice chairman of that council. 

“So beyond that there is now instead of just the Economic Management Team, an Economic Management Team Task Force and for the next six months that task force, made up of selected members of the Economic  Management Team, the private sector, as well as the sub-nationala, who will work assiduously to ensure that having dealt with major issues of monetary and fiscal policies, that the real sector growth is assured; companies are helped through these difficult times with fiscal incentives and other measures to ensure the survival of companies, both the large scale ones as well as the medium and small scale”.

Edun also explained that the federal government has officially ratified Nigeria’s membership of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), through preliminary approval, adding this will further enable the country use infrastructure as a multiplier to grow the nation’s economy. 

According to him: “We also fulfilled a commitment by Mr. President way back in June when we met the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development they had said they were looking to spread beyond the region of Europe and to take on partners shareholders and they will hopefully locked in five or six African countries.

“Interesting now preliminary approval has been ratified by the Federal Executive Council. We are going to be members of the European development and  infrastructure, and I do good to hear very shortly about the new initiatives, Describing an initiative that Mr. President brought to the Federal Executive Council along that line, infrastructure is critical is a major catalyst and a multiplier to grow in the economy. 

Edun added that Nigeria’s membership of the EBRD will help the country reduce cost logistics on transportation and infrastructure hence maximizing investment.

The federal government also on Monday said its legal case against cryptocurrency firm, Binance, cannot be jeopardized by the circumstances surrounding escape from legal custody by one of its Executive Directors, Nadeem Anjarwalla. 

Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Dr Zacch Adedeji, while responding to the Anjarwalla’s escape, said the company cannot escape the payment of fines placed on it for money laundering, as the federal government does not deal with individuals, but organizations. 

The Federal High Court in Abuja last Friday, granted requests by Binance to pay the sum of $4.3 Billion Settlement For Anti-Money Laundering, Sanctions Violations

FIRS boss said, “we are dealing with the company and not individuals, and we can enforce compliance with our laws. So, whether he escapes or not, that will not in any way affect our plans to enforce compliance as we can ensure that the organization comply with our legal requirements as a country”.

Deji Elumoye in Abuja

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