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By Felix Onuah
ABUJA, April 12 (Reuters) - Nigeria will delay the issuance of a green bond until the 2017 budget has been passed, the environment minister said on Wednesday.
The government had planned to launch the 20 billion naira ($65.55 million) bond in April to fund projects to reduce carbon emissions and develop renewable energy.
Announcing the plans in February, the environment ministry said the programme was aimed at widening Nigeria’s funding options and diversify the OPEC member’s oil-dependent economy, which is the largest in Africa.
“All is set for its formal launch but the budget has to be passed first before the issuance,” Ibrahim Usman Jibril, the minister of state for environment, told reporters in the capital, Abuja, following a cabinet meeting.
The budget -- which was first presented to lawmakers by President Muhammadu Buhari in December -- must be agreed by parliament before it can be signed into law by the president.
Lawmakers have resolved to pass the 2017 budget more swiftly than last year when wrangling between parliament and the presidency delayed the spending plan being passed in to law for months.
$1 = 305.1000 naira Writing by Alexis Akwagyiram; Editing by Alison Williams