Kenya to get $ 750 million World Bank loan within two weeks – Central Bank Director
NAIROBI, May 27 (Reuters) – Kenya expects to receive a loan of $ 750 million from the World Bank in the next two weeks to support its budget, the country’s central bank governor, Patrick Njoroge said Thursday.
The East African nation has been scrambling to get cash from abroad to fill a yawning budget deficit before its fiscal year ends at the end of next month.
In 2019, Kenya qualified for the World Bank’s Development Policy Operations (DPO), which lends money to the Treasury for budget support instead of funding specific projects.
“There is a loan, the so-called DPO, in the amount of $ 750 million, which we anticipate over the next few weeks,” Njoroge said at a press conference.
Kenya has already received two loans from the World Bank in the past two years.
The International Monetary Fund, which approved $ 2.34 billion in funding for Kenya in April, is expected to complete its final review next month, leading to the disbursement of $ 410 million, Njoroge said.
More funding will come from the African Development Bank, Njoroge said, without providing a figure.
“We expect the current account deficit to close at around 5.2% of GDP in 2021 and of course it will be fully funded,” he said. “We also expect an increase in the level of reserves from flows.”
The government is also set to issue new dollar bonds to raise $ 1 billion by the end of next month, but Njoroge has not commented on the matter.
Nairobi officials plan to seek an extension of the G20 debt suspension initiative, aimed at helping poorer countries cope with shocks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Njoroge said, without providing more details.
“It (the extension) will free up resources that can be used for other purposes, in particular COVID recovery,” he said.
(Reporting by Duncan Miriri; Editing by Pravin Char)
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