A $750 million loan facility has been approved by the World Bank for the Nigeria State Action on Business Enabling Reforms (SABER) Programme-for-Results.
This information was provided on Friday in a statement by the Washington-based organization headlined, “Improving the Business Enabling Environment in Nigeria to Create Jobs and Boost Inclusive Growth.”
The funding for SABER came in the form of an International Development Association (IDA) credit.
The program is in line with Nigeria’s National Development Plan (NDP), which lays out an ambitious plan for sustained private-sector-led economic growth with the goal of lifting 35 million people out of poverty by 2025 and creating 21 million employment.
The World Bank’s approval of the credit facility came on the same day the Federal Government declared that it was considering further fiscal policy actions in support of Micro, Small, and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) in the country.
The statement read: “The World Bank today approved the Nigeria State Action on Business Enabling Reforms (SABER) Program-for-Results. The $750 million International Development Association (IDA) credit will help Nigeria accelerate the implementation of critical actions that will improve the business enabling environment in states.”
According to the bank, Nigeria has made headway in pushing changes to remove barriers in the business climate, particularly through efforts spearheaded by the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC).
However, the bank warned that, in comparison to its peers, Nigeria’s ability to attract local and foreign investment remains limited.
It added: “Nigeria’s 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) are capable of catalyzing private investment, although their efforts and capacity to do so differ greatly.
“Given the importance of state-level reforms, the government developed a new program—SABER—to accelerate the implementation of critical actions that improve the business-enabling environment in Nigeria’s states.
“The government’s SABER program builds on the successes of PEBEC. It aims to strengthen the existing PEBEC-National Economic Council subnational interventions by adding incentives, namely results-based financing to the states, and the delivery of wholesale technical assistance–available to all states–to support gaps in reform implementation.”