May 27, 2014
On May 26, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed a Japanese ODA loan agreement with the Federal Government of Nigeria, to provide up to 8.285 billion yen for the Polio Eradication Project. This project aims to achieve early eradication of polio in Nigeria by procuring oral polio vaccines to efficiently inoculate children under five years of age throughout Nigeria. The loan funds will be allocated to procure 476 million polio vaccine doses.
This project incorporates an innovative “loan conversion” mechanism in collaboration with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (Gates Foundation)*1 will pay back the loan fund to JICA in place of the Government of Nigeria, once this project achieves the performance trigger indicators successfully during implementation. If that occurs, it will be the second case this mechanism is used, following the ODA loan to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan for the Polio Eradication Project.2
With the largest population and scale of economy in Africa, Nigeria has one of the highest rates of economic growth in the world, but the maternal mortality and child mortality rates are high among African nations. Nigeria is one of only three countries in the world where polio is endemic and, the other two being Pakistan and Afghanistan, is the only one in Africa. Between January and April of this year, polio cases were confirmed in 10 countries, including the three polio endemic countries mentioned, and as polio is crossing national borders, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the situation a public health emergency of international concern in May.
Since 2012, the Government of Nigeria has established a Polio Eradication Emergency Plan and taken other measures, such as establishing a task force and developing a number of activities aimed at early eradication. As a result, the number of confirmed infections decreased from 122 in 2012 to 53 in 2013, and this project will assist in accelerating those efforts. The Polio Eradication Project will be implemented on the basis of partnerships with a range of development partners, such as the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and WHO, as well as the Gates Foundation, to procure and administer vaccines.
Japan has established a track record of providing support to the Government of Nigeria toward eradicating polio, including the procurement of polio vaccines and support to build cold chains through Project for Infectious Diseases Prevention for Children funded by Japan through UNICEF, and supporting capacity development of Nigerian polio researchers through training in Japan. This project will build on such past cooperation and provide strong support for activities by the Government of Nigeria in eradicating polio.
1. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation was founded in 2000 by Bill and Melinda Gates with the objectives of improving health and alleviating poverty in developing countries, providing assistance in the U.S. primarily on the educational front, and correcting inequality around the world.
2. Signed in August 2011, the loan provided up to 4.993 billion yen in funding. This was the first project in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that employed the loan conversion mechanism.
1. Terms and Amount of Loan
|Annual interest rate (%)||Repayment
|Polio Eradication Project||8,285||0.2||-||20||6||Untied|
2. Executing Agency
National Primary Health Care Development Agency
Address: Plot 681/682, Port-Harcourt Crescent, Off Gimbiya Street, Area 11, Garki, Abuja, Federal Capital Territory, Nigeria
Phone: +234-9-3142925, fax: +234-9-3142924
3. Planned Implementation Schedule
Completion of project: December 2015 – to be completed with the end of all the polio campaigns to be implemented in 2015