Federal Government’s borrowing from China has grown by 209.15% under the Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) administration.
This is as total bilateral loans rose by 219.91% from $1.58bn as of June 2015 to $5.07bn as of December 2022. Total borrowing from China rose from $1.39bn to $4.29bn in the period under review.
Available data from the Debt Management Office revealed that Chinese loans make up 84.73% of the total amount Nigeria owes to other countries of the world. The remaining 15.27% is spread across France, Japan, India, and Germany.
According to the DMO, loans from China are concessional loans with interest rates of 2.50% per annum, have a tenor of 20 years, and grace period (moratorium) of seven years.
As of September 30, 2021, the DMO listed 15 projects there were being funded with Chinese loans in a document titled, ‘Status of Chinese loans as at September 30, 2021.’
The more listed loans include the Nigerian 40 Parboiled Rice Processing Plants Project (Fed. Min. of Agric & Rural Dev.), Nigerian Railway Modernisation Project (Lagos – Ibadan section), Nigeria Rehabilitation and Upgrading of Abuja, Keffi, Markurdi Road Project, Nigeria Supply of Rolling Stocks and Depot Equipment for Abuja Light Rail Project, and Nigeria Greater Abuja Water Supply Project.
While Nigeria has drawn consistently from China’s well under Buhari, China-Exim Bank declined and recently declined an earlier agreement to grant Nigeria a loan of $22.79bn.