The International Monetary Fund, IMF, has said it deployed a total of $6.8 billion in emergency support for Nigeria to cushion the effect of the pandemic in 2020 and 2021.
Ari Aisen, IMF country representative to Nigeria said this at the American Business Council economic update where experts explored opportunities and imperatives for businesses in the country.
According to him, the IMF has extended emergency assistance of $3.4 billion dollar in 2020 and another $3.4 billion SDR allocation was deployed in emergency support for Nigeria because of the pandemic.
What the IMF is saying
Ari said, “Because of the pandemic, IMF has extended emergency assistance of $3.4 billion dollars in 2020. In 2021 also because of the pandemic there was an SDR allocation – it is an additional resource to boost international reserves of the country by another $3.4 billion dollars. So, in 2 years $6.8 billion was deployed in emergency support for Nigeria.
“That was very helpful together with the policies to contain the negative impact of these huge shock; which was the pandemic, on the Nigerian economy, on the availability of imported goods, on salaries of public servants and on health package that the ministry of finance was able to put in place in 2020 when the pandemic hit.”
In addition to financing, Ari said the IMF has done more in terms of capacity development. He said, “Beyond financing, we also leave quite a bit of capacity development to public servants in various areas; In public financial management national account, price inflation statistics, bank supervision, payment system and some various areas of capacity development we do to support our member and Nigeria gets a lot of business assistance because it’s an important member country of IMF.
“And finally we also conduct articles for consultation, these are annual consultation visits to the country to discuss economic policies and have candid exchanges between expert economists from the IMF and expert Nigerian economists of the central bank, ministry of finance and all agencies to interact and discuss economic policies.”