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CHINESE LOAN: Fear grips Nigerians as Uganda hands only Int’l Airport 

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Nigerians have expressed fear over trending news regarding loan difference between China and Uganda.

The report says Uganda moves to lose possession of its only international airport, the Entebbe Airport, to China, beckause of the abuse of a multimillion dollar loan facility.

The East Africa nation whereas negotiating the loan facility signed away the custody of the airport’s bank accounts to the Chinese Exim Financial institution, the lender.

Report on Thursday that the offending clause had been initially picked up by the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority, which depicted some clauses within the deal as “unfriendly.”

“The most troubling for the aviation bosses was a clause that gave Exim Financial institution the only real authority to approve withdrawal of funds from the UCAA accounts,” the report remarked,  further stressed that the financial institution additionally had the ability to authorize annual and month-to-month working budgets, which it might rescind, and the rights to examine the government and UCAA books of accounts. “The China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC) in Beijing also had the mandate to resolve disputes.”

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In 2015, Matia Kasaija, the finance minister pushed for parliament’s authorization of a $207 million loan from Exim Bank of China. This mortgage facility was planned for advances of the airport which comprised the improvement of the main terminal building, a brand new cargo centre, and multi-storey parking.

Efforts have been made to renegotiate the terms of the loan. A team sent to China in 2019 were sent back without optimistic outcomes, as they were informed that there wouldn’t be any modification to the loan agreement.

Regardless of this, Uganda’s Lawyer General Kiwanuka Kiryowa, has played down the situation. Mr Kiryowa reported that no property has been mortgaged and the loan contract placed responsibilities on each parties.

He’s quoted: “When you borrow money, your obligation is to pay. If you don’t pay, the other occasion can take you to court, in which case this would be CIETAC,”

Mr Kasaija in April stated that Uganda would attempt to reconcile a possible suspension of loan repayments with its major creditors such as China and the World Bank as its debt load accumulated to 35 per cent in a year.

Uganda’s total public debt rose to $18 billion because the nation reached recent credit facilities to cover revenue shortfalls as measures taken to fight the effects of the pandemic.

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