July 20, 2018 / 4:44 PM / a year ago

Nigeria to devise green bond issuance program by end 2018

LAGOS (Reuters) - Nigeria’s debt office will devise a green bond program before the end of 2018 to raise funds for environmental projects, a junior minister for the environment said on Friday.

Ibrahim Jibril said the capital market could see issues of around 208 billion naira ($682 million) this year to fund projects to reduce carbon emissions. The ministry said the total figure was not fixed and would depend on an evaluation of the projects that need funding.

“Before the year runs out the DMO will come up with a program where we will come to the market for another issue,” Jibril told reporters at the listing of its debut green bond on the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

Nigeria has been exploring options to fund its successive record budgets especially after an oil price collapse in late 2014 that triggered a recession two year later. The economy has since recovered but growth is still fragile.

The environment ministry has said a bond program for environmental projects is part of the government’s aim to align with a global objective of expanding the market for finance for efforts to fight climate change.

Last year the West African country issued a maiden 10.69 billion naira green bond with a five-year tenor to fund projects to develop renewable energy. It was listed on Friday for secondary trading.

($1 = 304.85 naira)

(This version of the story corrects minister’s name to Jibril not Jibrin)

Writing by Chijioke Ohuocha; Editing by Alexis Akwagyiram, Raissa Kasolowsky and Peter Graff

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