Nigeria alongside others with economic challenges can access long time concessionary facilities from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) at zero interest rate, as the Fund has introduced zero interest rates on all its concessional facilities until 2018.
The Managing Director, IMF, Ms Christine Lagarde, disclosed this yesterday at the ongoing IMF/ World Bank 2016 General Meeting in Washington D.C. She said that after the duration (2018), IMF would maintain low interest rates around the world.
The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, has been negotiating to borrow from multilateral institutions such as the IMF and the World Bank to fund capital projects in the country.
Lagarde said: “If we want to address the inequality issues, we need to have a strong international safety net. In this context, I am pleased to note that our board has approved zero interest rates on all fund concessional facilities until 2018.
“This is really important for low-income countries to be able to actually absorb the shocks without necessarily going to the international markets or relying on bilateral lending that can be far expensive,’’ she said.
The IMF boss also dis closed that the board had agreed to also maintain the overall lending capacity of close to one trillion dollars by extending access to bilateral borrowing agreements.
She said that the new agreements, which would be signed this week, would run at least through the end of 2019, and would continue to serve as a third line of defence.
She said the first line being quota; second, new agreements to borrow and the third, bilateral loans. Lagarde said that IMF had so far received pledges of $ 344 billion from 26 members. She said that with strong, comprehensive, consistent and coordinated action, countries could achieve more inclusive growth.