15:26 GMT30 November 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in a statement on Tuesday that it has approved $3.4 billion in emergency funding for Nigeria amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the collapse of oil prices that severely affected the country.

    "The IMF approved US$3.4 billion in emergency financial assistance under the Rapid Financing Instrument to support the authorities’ efforts in addressing the severe economic impact of the COVID-19 shock and the sharp fall in oil prices", the statement said.

    Rising external vulnerabilities and falling per capita GDP had weighed on the economy in Nigeria, one of the world’s leading oil exporters, even before the viral outbreak, the statement added.

    "The pandemic - along with the sharp fall in oil prices - has magnified the vulnerabilities, leading to a historic decline in growth and large financing needs", the statement read.

    The IMF said earlier this month it was providing some $100 billion as a short-term liquidity line to more than 100 countries requiring emergency financing due to hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Africa alone faced a budget shortfall of $44 billion due to economic stress from the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund said in a joint statement on 17 April.

    Global oil prices have slumped this year as demand for oil fell from a curb on non-essential travel, work and social activity across the world by governments trying to clamp down on the virus’ spread.

    Nigeria, World Bank, International Monetary Fund
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