World Bank accepts Nigeria’s loan application
LARAMIE, Wyoming – At the end of 2020, the World Bank approved a $ 1.5 billion loan in Nigeria with the main aim of reducing poverty levels in the country and accelerating development in Nigeria. The loan will help finance two major projects: the country’s COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (CARES) program and State tax transparency, Accountability and Sustainability for Results Program (SFTAS). The two projects will coordinate and collaborate with the International Development Association.
Divide the loan
The first project delegates funds to the Nigeria CARES program, focusing on the immediate needs of those disproportionately affected by the pandemic. The second component of the loan contributes to improving access to education, water and sanitation as well as improving health care and setting up assistance programs. social. Each of these sectors is underdeveloped and needs sustainable solutions to lift the Nigerian people out of poverty.
The official World Bank statement reads: “With the sharp drop in oil prices in the wake of COVID-19, the economy is expected to contract by more than 4% in 2020, plunging the country into its deepest recession since the 1980s. Government revenues could fall by more than $ 15 billion this year, and the crisis will plunge an additional five million Nigerians into poverty in 2020 ”. As it is, nearly half of the country’s population already live below the poverty line, earning less than $ 1.90 per day.
Current economic challenges
Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, with an estimated 206 million inhabitants. Despite significant economic growth over the past decade, Nigeria still struggles with high levels of poverty and unemployment. A statistic of African quartz states, “One in two Nigerians in the country’s labor force is either unemployed or underemployed. Underemployment describes people working less than 40 hours per week or working below their level of skill, expertise or education. Since 2015, the unemployment rate has almost tripled.
Boko Haram in Nigeria
Violence and conflict in Nigeria has been going on for years. The extremist group Boko Haram has been a force in Nigeria since its founding in 2002. Terrorists have carried out indiscriminate attacks against civilians across the country, often target schools and keep hostages for ransom. The organization ultimately claimed the lives of thousands of people and caused the displacement of approximately 2.1 million people.
Since 2009, Boko Haram has claimed the life of a around 30,000 civilians across the country, although the actual number is likely higher. Along with food insecurity for millions of people, the group has also worsened, “the degradation of infrastructure, including the closure or destruction more than half of the schools in the region, and the almost complete failure of an already weak public health system, ”said the Foreign Relations Council (CFR). The threat from this group is serious and the Nigerian government needs more resources to fight Boko Haram and end the group’s insurgency.
How help helps
Nigeria has the necessary resources to continue its economic and industrial development. However, it lacks financial stability. The loan granted by the World Bank is therefore a crucial step towards the development of Nigeria and the construction of a sustainable, safer and more prosperous country.
Organizations like the CLEEN Foundation are also present in Nigeria, providing citizens with essential resources and assistance. The CLEEN Foundation works specifically to “promote public safety, security and accessible justice”.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is also providing assistance to displaced Nigerians and refugees in the region. It works in collaboration with various non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in northern Nigeria to restore peace and security in unstable areas. The organizations have provided assistance to hundreds of thousands of displaced civilians, including food and water resources for refugees in the Lake Chad basin. As stated on its website, “UNHCR also organizes sessions on protection from sexual exploitation and abuse for security agents and aid workers in state capitals as well as at the local level”.
As Nigeria grapples with violence and poverty from Boko Haram, the World Bank loan offers hope for economic progress and mitigation of the severe impacts of the pandemic. Aid from NGOs and United Nations partners has provided vital resources to thousands of people in Nigeria and will continue to work with those in need for as long as needed. With the loan from the World Bank, UN agencies are optimistic for Nigeria’s future development.
– Allyson Reeder