Crude swap deal: FG gets $925m Afrieximbank disbursement

The Nigerian government has received $925 million from Afrieximbank as the Naira appreciated against the Dollar on Thursday.

Afreximbank announced an additional disbursement of $925m under the syndicated $3.3 billion crude oil-backed prepayment facility organized by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited.

The development comes at the same time the Naira recorded a marginal appreciation to N1481.49 against the dollar at the official foreign exchange market on Thursday.

Accordingly, the latest Afreximbank’s accordion disbursement for Project Gazelle Funding Limited brings the total current funded facility size to $3.175 billion.

The accordion arrangement by Afreximbank saw the raising of a combined total of $925 million from a consortium of crude oil off-taker lenders including but not limited to the Oando Group and Sahara Energy Resource Limited.

“Afreximbank acted as Mandated Lead Arranger, Technical and Modelling Bank, Bookrunner, Facility Agent, Offshore Account Bank, Intercreditor Agent and Collateral Agent for the transaction which is expected to provide further support for Nigeria’s macroeconomic stability and long-term economic growth while enhancing the country’s industrialization and trade development efforts,” the bank stated in a statement posted on its website on Thursday.

Speaking on the disbursement, Prof. Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Afreximbank, said, “The milestone achieved thus far on this facility demonstrates the bank’s capabilities in performing its role as a crucial development partner for Africa.

“It reaffirms our commitment to assisting our member states in their efforts to achieve economic growth and stability. This funding will greatly support the attainment of Nigeria’s short and long-term economic development priorities.”

On his part, Group Chief Executive Officer, NNPC Limited, Mele Kyari, lauded Afreximbank management and team for their investment philosophy and active interest in the co-creation of prosperity.

“The successful disbursement of the first accordion under project Gazelle and its interest in funding viable and strategic projects is a clear indication of investors’ confidence in NNPC and Nigeria’s growth aspirations,” Kyari stated.

Recall that in August last year, the NNPCL announced that it had secured a $3.3 billion emergency crude oil repayment loan from the African Export-Import Bank.

It explained that the loan would be used by the oil company to support the Federal Government in stabilizing Nigeria’s exchange rate.

In January, NNPCL further explained that it would prepay future royalties and taxes to the Federal Government from the $3.3 billion financing deal it got from the African Export-Import Bank.

The report stated that NNPCL disclosed this in a document titled, ‘Frequently Asked Questions – Project Gazelle’, released by its Chief Corporate Communications Officer, Olufemi Soneye.

Clarifying the crude oil swap deal, NNPCL said in a document titled, “Everything you need to know about the NNPC Limited’s $3.3 billion loan, also known as Project Gazelle,” that “this is a financing agreement secured by NNPC Limited to prepay future royalties and taxes to the Federal Government.”

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