BEVERLY HILLS, April 7, (THEWILL) – Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) says the board of the institution is working hard to respond to Nigeria’s request for financial assistance under the Fund’s Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI).
In a statement Tuesday, Georgieva identified the coronavirus pandemic and the sharp drop in the price of crude of oil as major headwinds against Nigeria’s economy and acknowledged efforts by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government towards confronting the challenge.
Nigeria has applied for $3.4 billion from the IMF. It is also seeking $2.5 billion from the World Bank and $1 billion from the African Development Bank (AfDB).
“Nigeria’s economy is being threatened by the twin shocks of the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated sharp fall in international oil prices. President Buhari’s administration is taking a number of measures aimed at containing the spread of the virus and its impact, including by swiftly releasing contingency funds to Nigeria’s Center for Disease Control and working on an economic stimulus package that will help provide relief for households and businesses impacted by the downturn.
“To support these efforts, Nigeria’s government has requested financial assistance under the Fund’s Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI). This emergency financing would allow the government to address additional and urgent balance of payments needs and support policies that would make it possible to direct funds for priority health expenditures and protect the most vulnerable people and firms. We are working hard to respond to this request so that a proposal can be considered by the IMF’s Executive Board as soon as possible,” the IMF Managing Director wrote.