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Osinbajo Seeks Debt Relief For Nigeria And Other African Countries

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The Vice President Of Nigeria Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has urged multilateral organizations to put into consideration the responsibilities of African countries and adopt debt relief initiatives such as Debt Service Suspension Initiative and the Common Framework for Debt Treatments, this was made public by Osinnbajo while delivering an address during the virtual edition of the 2022 World Economic Forum (WEF) on 21st January 2022.

The Vice President call on the International community to support African countries to overcome fiscal challenges arising from their limited revenues, hence the partnership is needed to help in getting rid of terrorists in Africa just as it was done in the Middle East.

Osinbajo highlighted major progress on the African continent, which are; recovery from the global pandemic, economic growth by 3.7% last and a speculated 3.8% in 2022, the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement to fast track economic transformation, and massive increase in agriculture, manufacturing, and digital technology.

According to him, “the creation of $650 billion in new Special Drawing Rights last year was a step in the right direction, but more needs to be done to enable African and other developing countries access the SDRs that are not needed or being used by developed or emerging economies.”

According to Prof. Osinbajo: “African countries face a serious threat of terrorism arising from the encroachment of global terror groups and their franchises into Africa. It is imperative for the international community to make more robust interventions to clear terrorists from Africa just as it did in the Middle East and other parts of the world.

“The United Nations Security Council must find unanimity in working with and assisting African countries to eradicate the menace of terrorism in the continent once and for all.”

He added: “Although we in Africa are working towards the globally accepted net-zero future, we are also conscious that our energy needs are increasing with the growth in our economies.

“We need to ramp up energy access in response to this situation which is why the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energies must be just and fair. We are emphatic in our view that natural gas which Africa has in abundance must be accepted as a transition fuel. Moves in the international community especially by development finance institutions to defund gas projects will have severe implications in the medium to long-term for African economies and will slow down the process of phasing out more polluting fuels such as coal, diesel, and heavy fuel oil (HFO),” he added.

The vice president similarly called for the partnership to tackle poverty, access vaccinations, and achieve debt sustainability.

He added: “Economic recovery in Africa is contingent on the containment of the pandemic including through widespread vaccinations. Right now, less than 10% of African countries have vaccinated 40% of their population. The reality is that due to resource constraints, there will be a relatively slow rollout of vaccinations in Africa and full national rollouts may take several years. The international community must accordingly support Africa with the resources including vaccine doses that will assist in making vaccinations available to all.”