Nigeria Issues Sovereign ‘Green’ Bond

Nigeria, one of sub-Saharan Africa‘s largest economies, has officially become the first nation to issue a Climate Bonds Certified Sovereign Green Bond, making it the first African nation to issue a sovereign green bond and now the fourth nation in the world to issue after Poland, France, and current COP23 member President, Fiji, respectively.

The 10.69 billion Nigerian naira issuance has been described by the Ministry of the Environment as a “pilot sovereign” of a foreshadowed NGN 150 billion green bond program and will fund a range of renewable energy, afforestation, and environmental projects. The 5-Year Bond settles on December 22nd. Chapel Hill Denham is the financial adviser.

In a statement, Ibrahim Usman Jibril, Minister for State for Environment stated that “climate change is real and business, government, and the capital market need to work together to slow its effects.” He added that the pilot green bond, is not the last and the expectation of it is “to be the first of many more.” The platform has been developed to address the nation’s target of reducing its emissions by 20 percent unconditionally and 45 percent conditionally by 2030.

Climate Bonds Director of Market Development, Justine Leigh-Bell:

“This debut sovereign issuance is part of Nigeria’s many efforts directed towards its Paris based NDC commitments.  National leadership combined with international support has achieved the first stage of a long-term green investment pipeline.  The wider objective is to build capital flows across Nigeria’s vast economy that contribute towards domestic climate and environmental goals.”

The debut green bond has come to market after an extensive development process involving domestic and international stakeholders. Moody’s Investors Service has assigned a Green Bond Assessment of GB1 (Excellent) to the issuance and is expected to be listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) by the Nigerian Debt Management Office (DMO).