Nigeria’s borrowings will expand economy, provide jobs, says Ajumbe
A Chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Prof Vitalis Orikeze Ajumbe says there is no cause for alarm over Nigeria’s level of indebtedness to creditor nations of the world.
The former Imo State Commissioner for Information and later Commissioner for Internally Generated Revenue and Pension Matters, noted that despite the borrowings, Nigeria is not listed amongst the highest borrowers in the world.
Ajumbe, who applauded the recent borrowings by the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to fund capital projects in the country, argued that the measure was in tandem with international best practices.
The APC chieftain, in a chat with reporters in Abuja, noted that “Nigeria is not amongst the world’s topmost debtor countries.
It is just No. 8 in Africa to China with $4.8billion, whilst some people think China may recolonise Nigeria because of our debt. Every developed and developing country in the World lives on borrowings.”
Revealing the debt profiles of African countries, Ajumbe stated that Angola, Ethiopia and Kenya are the top three African countries with the highest debt profiles of $25billion, $13.5billion and $7.9billion respectively.
He listed others to include the Republic of Congo ($7.5 billion), Sudan ($6.4 billion), Zambia ($6.5 billion), Cameroon ($5.5 billion), Nigeria ($4.8billion), Ghana ($3.5 billion) and DR Congo ($3.4 billion).
Ajumbe further gave a rundown of 20 developed countries, which are the most debt owing countries in the world.
According to him, they are: U.S.A ($18.286 trillion), U.K ($7,499 trillion), France ($5,250 trillion), Germany ($5,084), Netherlands ($4,124 trillion), Luxembourg ($3,900 trillion), Japan ($3,408 trillion), Italy ($2,285 trillion), Ireland ($2,236 trillion), Spain ($2,036trillion), Canada ($1,791 trillion), Switzerland ($1,699 trillion), Australia ($1,563 trillion), China ($1,437 trillion), Hong Kong ($1,416trillion), Singapore ($1,300 trillion), Belgium ($1,194 trillion), Sweden ($938 billion), Austria ($629 billion), and Norway ($623 billion).
He noted that ongoing borrowings by the Federal Government is not out of place, but would be channeled to fund railway projects, road construction and rehabilitation across the country, in addition to stimulating massive job opportunities for millions of Nigerians, which he said would expand the economy.
“In years to come, Nigerians will appreciate the vision and mission of the Buhari administration when the loan spendings shall begin to yield results,” Ajumbe said.
He advised Nigerians to be patient with the Buhari-led government and not to negatively criticize every positive move to reposition the economy.