Two and a half months after the coup in Niger, the United States announced on October 10th that it was suspending its development aid to Niamey. Following the World Bank and several European countries, Washington joins the list of nations that have halted payments to Niger, resulting in a substantial financial setback for the country.
The sums involved are considerable. According to a recent report by the World Bank, almost $1.2 billion will not be disbursed to Niger this year, accounting for over 6% of the country’s GDP.
The suspension of development aid by various countries and organizations is to blame. Initially, several European countries, including France, Germany, Luxembourg, and the European Union, suspended their aid to Niger. In total, they were to provide $375 million to Niger this year. By July 26, 2023, the date of the coup, they had already disbursed 28% of this amount.
End of American aid
In addition to the European countries, the United States, which had planned to disburse $442 million in economic aid, has now halted its payments. It is unclear how much of this amount has already been disbursed. Following the October 10, 2023 decision to label it a “coup,” the U.S. Department of State is obligated to cease all payments. American officials, however, specify that humanitarian aid for the population is not affected.
Apart from development aid, the World Bank and the IMF were also providing several hundred million dollars in budgetary support to the Niamey government. Before the coup, only a few tens of millions had been disbursed in the form of loans and grants.
These sanctions represent a significant revenue loss for Niger, which relied on international aid to balance its budget and to execute various infrastructure projects. Thus, while growth was expected to reach 6% in 2023, it may now be as low as 2.3%, according to World Bank estimates.