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Togo and the World Bank have agreed a $150 million loan to refinance its more expensive debt after the global lender failed to guarantee the initial 300 million euros that the country is seeking.

“Due to the refusal of the new board of the World Bank to guarantee the syndicated loans,” Togo has held discussions on a cheaper loan,” Finance Minister Sani Yaya said in the capital, Lome. Initially, the country planned to raise 300 million euros ($334 million) through a syndicated loan to improve the nation’s debt management.

Discussions are continuing with the World Bank and other partners for loans to reach the 300 million euro target it’s seeking, Yaya said. The government hopes to use the funds to achieve its goal of providing electricity to 60% of the population by 2022 and universal access by 2030.According to the International Monetary Fund, Togo has made progress in narrowing the budget deficit to 71% of GDP from 81% at the end of 2016. It forecasts the economy will expand 5.5% in 2020 compared with 5.3% in 2019.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kossi Woussou in Accra at kwoussou@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Gordon Bell at gbell16@bloomberg.net, Jacqueline Mackenzie, Eric Ombok

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