John Ameh, Abuja
The Chairman of Heirs Holdings, Mr. Tony Elumelu, on Friday called on the International Monetary Fund to suggest alternative loans to Chinese facilities since it had warned Nigeria against sourcing loans from China.
Elumelu spoke in Abuja soon after he held a private meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa.
He was reacting to IMF’s Financial Counsellor and Director of Monetary/Capital Markets Department, Mr. Tobias Adrian, who had on Wednesday, given the warning during the launch of the Global Financial Stability Report for April, 2019, at the IMF/World Bank meeting in Washington D.C, United States of America.
Adrian had stated, “Capital flows, which includes capital flows from China are of course important for development.
“On the other hand, what is very important in lending arrangements are the terms of the loans and we urge countries to make sure that when they borrow from abroad the terms are favourable.
“In particular, we recommend that loans to countries should conform with Paris Club arrangements and that is not always the case of loans from China.”
But Elumelu, who is also the founder of the Elumelu Foundation, argued that it amounted to creating a vacuum for the IMF to oppose Chinese loans but failed to suggest the alternatives.
He stated that countries must be able to continue to build their systems and create more jobs for their teeming populations.
Elumelu said, “My position is that nature abhors vacuum; if you do not want Nigeria to take China loan, provide the alternative. Like I keep saying, they should also support the development of entrepreneurs.
“They should look at ways to help us eradicate poverty in a manner that is sustainable.”
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