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Nigeria’s Foreign Debt Surges 252.2% in 10 Years



  • Nigeria’s Foreign Debt Surges 252.2% in 10 Years

Nigeria’s foreign debt rose by 252.2 percent in ten years, according to a recent report from the World Bank International Debt Statistics 2020.

According to the report, Nigeria’s total foreign debt rose from $13.1 billion in 2008 to $46.24 billion in 2018, representing an increase of N33.14 billion or 252.2 percent.

The total foreign debt of low- and middle-income nations grew by 5.3 percent to $7.8 trillion in 2018, while net debt flows declined by 28 percent to $529 billion.

Accordingly, low-and middle-income countries with debt-to-Gross National Income (GNI) ratios below 30 percent dropped from 42 percent to 25 percent in the last 10 years.

The report noted that foreign debt burden of low-and middle-income countries was moderate during the period.

“To grow faster, many developing countries need more investment that meets their development goals,” World Bank Group President David Malpass said. “Debt transparency should extend to all forms of government commitments, both explicit and implicit. Transparency is a critical part of attracting more investment and building an efficient allocation of capital, and these are essential in our work to improve development outcomes.”

Nigeria’s foreign debt to GNI jumped from 4 percent in 2008 to 12 percent in 2018. While foreign long-term debt stock grew by 240.7 percent from $12.9 billion in 2014 to $43.91 billion. Suggesting the president Buhari administration borrowed about 70.62 percent of the total foreign debt incurred in the last 10 years.

The report also noted that more than 50 percent of the nation’s long-term foreign debt stock were public and publicly guaranteed and grew by 526 percent from $3.9 billion in 2008 to $24.42 billion.

Similarly, interest repayment rose by 1,418 percent to $1.32 billion in 2018, up from $87 million in 2008.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s local debt rose by N1.26 trillion in the first half of 2019 to N13.41 trillion, according to the Central Bank of Nigeria’s report.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.