- N1.15tn Revenue Shortfall Recorded in 2016
The National Assembly, on Thursday, scored the Federal Government low on the performance of the capital expenditure in the 2016 budget.
The Federal Government, however, blamed the low performance on revenue shortfall, adding that while the total revenue target was N1.506tn, only N398bn was generated in the 2016 fiscal year, with a revenue shortfall of about N1.15tn.
The government also said it had achieved 55 per cent performance on the N870bn capital expenditure.
These were made known at a forum jointly organised by the Senate and House of Representatives Committees on Appropriations.
The Chairman of the Senate Committee, Senator Danjuma Goje, had asked the Federal Government officials how much had been released and cash-backed, the percentage of releases and percentage of cash backs out of the total budget.
In her presentation, the Minister of State for Budget, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, recalled that the 2016 budget was predicated on an oil benchmark price of $38 per barrel, with an average oil output of 2.2 million barrels per day, and official exchange rate of N197 to a United States dollar.
She added that based on the aggregate revenue of N3.86tn, the size of the 2016 budget was N6.06tn, with a deficit of N2.2tn or 2.14 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product, which was supposed to be financed with local and foreign borrowings as well as recoveries.
Ahmed said, “We had last year prepared a Strategic Implementation Plan for the 2016 budget and this plan was principally prepared to guide the implementation of the budget. To this end, we identified 34 key priority areas and with very clear and verifiable targets.
“However, challenges in the economy have undermined the full realisation of the objectives set out in the SIP. Notwithstanding, for most of 2016, crude oil prices exceeded the benchmark of $38 per barrel. There had been a significant shortfall of projected revenue, which was caused largely by the disruption of crude oil production by militant activities.”
Others factors that affected the 2016 revenue target, she said, were fuel supply shortages, significant challenges with power supply and foreign exchange supply scarcity.
The minister stated, “The shortfall in the level of crude oil exports resulted in significant reduction in government revenues and foreign exchange shortages, which caused the economy to slip into recession. Since 95 per cent of our foreign exchange earnings come from the petroleum sector, this has impacted adversely on the level of non-oil revenues as well. The non-oil revenues were significantly impacted, as a lot of activities, even in the non-oil sector, depend largely on foreign exchange.
“On the expenditure side of the budget, the personnel costs were met completely; debt service obligations were fully met, but capital expenditure was behind targeted estimates. It is, however, important for us to note that by the close of the year, about N834bn was already released as capital expenditure. Let me also say that this is the highest release in the history of our country for a very long time. In fact, it exceeds the aggregate capital expenditure of the 2015 budget.”
The Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, in his presentation, stated that one critical aspect of budget implementation that concerned his office was that of funds release “as appropriated and as approved.”
According to Idris, the total capital payment or releases for 2016 as of Thursday was N870,055,792,283.
He put the amount of Internally Generated Revenue at N398,335,850,749.45, adding, “There was also receipt or approval from FAAC of N4.058tn during the year.”
He said, “In doing that, we have invited the Minister of Finance (Kemi Adeosun) and other officials of the ministry; Minister of Budget (Senator Udo Udoma); Minister of State for Budget (Zainab Ahmed); Director General, Budget Office (Ben Akabueze); the Accountant General of the Federation (Ahmed Idris); Director General, Debt Management Office (Abraham Nwankwo); and the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (Godwin Emefiele).
The session started on a dramatic note when a member of the committee, Senator Jibrin Barau, called the attention of the lawmakers to the absence of some officials from the meeting.
“Chairman, I can see that the Minister of Finance is not here and this is a very important session that the minister needs to be here. I don’t know why she is not here,” he said.
Adeosun later joined the session.
Goje also announced the absence of the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, and asked to know his representative.
An Acting Director of the CBN, Mr. Mohammed el-Yakubu, indicated that he was representing Emefiele and expressed the “sincere apologies” of the governor to the lawmakers.
But the announcement angered the lawmakers.
Members of the committee asked that Emefiele’s representative to leave the meeting, insisting that the CBN governor or one of his deputies should be at the meeting.
World Bank Lauds Kogi’s 2020 Financial Statement
The World Bank has heaped praise on the Government of Kogi State concerning the state’s audited financial statement for 2020. The financial institution was said to have described the financial report as a standard to look up to concerning transparency and accountability in the public sector.
In a statement which was dated November 21, 2021 it was said that the bank made the commendation in a letter which was sent to the Accountant General of the state.
As said in the statement, the letter which was taken by the Kogi State Accountant General on November 2025 was signed by Deborah Hannah Isser, the Task Team Leader of the States Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability Programme (SFTAS), Nigeria Country Office, Western and Central African Region.
SFTAS is a $750 million programme which has been set up to reward states for meeting any or every one of the indicators which demonstrate improvements in fiscal transparency, sustainability and accountability.
The indicators, which are nine in number were a byproduct of the former Fiscal Sustainability Plan of the federal government where States would be rewarded for meeting up to 22 targets.
The World Bank had previously backed the federal government to give incentives to the states in order to properly execute the 22-point Fiscal Sustainability Plan, which has now gone under a revamp as the nine Disbursement Linked Indicators under SFTAS.
Some of the criteria on which judgement will be based on are: improvement in financial reporting and budget reliability, improved cash management, increased openness, citizen participation in the budget process, reduced revenue leakages through the execution of State Treasury Single Account (TSA), a strengthened Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) collection, biometric registration and Bank Verification Number (BVN) used to reduce payroll fraud.
The World Bank commended the Kogi State government for preparing its audited financial statements in line with the basis of the International Public Sector Accounting Standards.
Nigeria’s Rigid Forex Policy Discouraging Investors, Fueling Inflation – World Bank
The World Bank has blamed the Central Bank of Nigeria’s rigid forex policy for the drop in Nigeria’s capital importation and rising inflation rate.
The bank disclosed in its November report, Nigeria Development Update.
Explaining modalities for its position, the World Bank stated that there had been constant pressure on the Nigerian Naira with the current forex policy, forcing the central bank to consistently increase its nominal official exchange rate in an effort to ease some of the pressure.
This, it blamed on the rigid foreign exchange management system of the Central Bank of Nigeria, saying the system has also been responsible for the rising inflation rate in Nigeria.
The report read in part, “The government’s exchange rate management policies continue to discourage investment and fuel inflation. Exchange rate stability is a key CBN policy objective, and to preserve its external reserves the CBN continues to manage FX demand and limit the supply of FX to the market.
“Pressure on the naira remains intense, and while the CBN has raised the nominal official exchange rate three times since the start of the pandemic (by 15 per cent in March 2020, five per cent in August 2020, and seven per cent in May 2021), FX management remains too rigid to respond to external shocks. Meanwhile, exchange-rate management has emerged as one of the key drivers of inflation.”
The World Bank further stated that the central bank foreign exchange system needs to be more flexible to withstand external shocks, especially given Nigeria’s mono-product nature. It added that the NAFEX rate does not reflect the true market rate but the central bank managed rate.
It read in part, “While the CBN supplied an average of $2.5bn to the Investors and Exporters forex window in the months just prior to the COVID-19 crisis, it only supplied an average of $0.5bn in the months thereafter.
“The NAFEX rate, which is now the guiding exchange rate for the economy, continues to be managed and is not fully reflective of market conditions. The parallel market premium over the NAFEX rate reached 29 per cent in August 2021 after the CBN cut off its weekly supply of $20,000 per bureau de change. The CBN has intermittently supplied forex to BDCs since 2005, providing ample opportunities for currency round-tripping.”
The institution however advised that Nigeria adopt a more predictable, transparent and flexible foreign exchange management system in order to attract and sustain private investment flows.
Nigeria’s Non-oil Revenue Now N1.15 Trillion – Minister of Finance
Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, has said that Nigeria’s non-oil revenue is now N1.15 trillion, representing 15.7 percent above the country’s target. This, she claimed, was a result of the federal government’s efforts at diversifying the nation’s economy.
Mrs. Ahmed disclosed this at the Institute of Directors (IoD) 2021 Annual Directors Conference which was held on Wednesday in Abuja.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) the event with the theme: “Creating the Future: Deepening the Corporate Governance Practice through Multi-Sectoral and Multi-Generational Collaborations,” was meant to discuss economic development.
Mrs Ahmed added that the recent development was in line with President’s commitment to further diversifying the Nigerian economy which is heavily dependent on oil. She observed that Nigeria was showing resilience in recovery from recession from coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic which intensely affected global economies.
The minister said the federal government alongside the private sector had implemented a wide range of monetary measures to stimulate economic recovery, growth and development, job creation and improved standards of living.
She also explained that the government was doing everything to improve and diversify Nigeria’s revenue generation.
“Nigeria was quickly able to exit recession and is on her way to path of sustainable growth and we are intensifying efforts to grow and diversify our revenue sources to grow revenue from the current 8 per cent.”
“Our non-oil revenues have grown to N1.15 trillion, representing 15.7 per cent above set target. We are working on the 2021 finance bill and it’s nearing completion. Also, the recent approval of the medium-term national development plan is an important milestone of Buhari’s commitment to delivering sustainable growth and we require strong support and monitoring during implementation,” she said.
Mrs Ahmed reinforced the government’s decision to do something about infrastructure and reduce the cost of production for businesses in the country.
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