- FG Recorded N3.21tn Fiscal Deficit in 2016
The Federal Government recorded a fiscal deficit of N3.21tn in its operations last year, figures obtained from the Central Bank of Nigeria revealed.
The figures are contained in the Financial Stability Report prepared the apex and released in Abuja on Wednesday.
It stated that the fiscal deficit for the second half of the year, which was put at N1.47tn, was lower than the N1.75tn recorded in the first half of 2016.
These figures, according to the report, are also higher than the budgeted deficit of N1.1tn provided for in the second half of 2016.
The deficit, according to the CBN report, was financed through domestic sources, including issuance of government securities.
The apex bank said the fiscal stance of increased spending to address the challenges of the negative growth (recession) led to higher government expenditure in the second half of 2016.
For instance, it said the Federal Government expenditure grew by 10.3 per cent to N4.02tn in the second half, noting that this was above the N3.65tn in the first half of 2016.
It added that the expenditure figure of N4.02tn was also higher than the budgeted expenditure of N3.12tn for the second half of the year under review.
The report explained that the recurrent expenditure component of the total expenditure accounted for N3.46tn, representing 86.9 per cent; while the capital and statutory transfer components accounted for N264.9bn or 6.6 per cent and N263.4bn or 6.5 per cent, respectively.
The report stated that the Federal Government’s retained revenue for the second half of 2016 increased to N2.55tn, above the N1.89tn recorded in the first half and the half-year budget estimate of N2.2tn.
The increase in the retained revenue relative to the first half, it added, was due to increase in non-oil receipts.
A breakdown of the retained revenue showed that the Federal Government’s share of the Federation Account was N1.26tn or 49.4 per cent; Value Added Tax Pool Account, N90.7bn or 3.5 per cent; while the Federal Government Independent Revenue was put at N267.8bn or 10.5 per cent.
The report put the Federal Government’s share of the Excess Crude Account at N141.4bn (5.5 per cent); exchange gain, N316.4bn (12.4 per cent); while others, including Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation refunds, accounted for the balance of N479.3bn or 18.7 per cent.
Federal Government Clears $120m Debt to Gas Companies Amid Nigeria’s Power Crisis
Amidst Nigeria’s persistent power crisis, the Federal Government has taken a pivotal step forward by clearing a significant portion of its debt to gas companies.
A sum of $120 million has been paid out of the country’s $1.3 billion indebtedness to gas suppliers, offering a glimmer of hope for improved energy stability across the nation.
The Minister of Power, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, underscored the critical role of gas in power generation and highlighted how the mounting debts had severely hampered gas supply to electricity-generating companies, exacerbating the country’s electricity shortfall.
Nigeria heavily relies on thermal power plants fueled by gas for over 70% of its electricity needs, making the timely settlement of gas debts paramount for enhancing power generation capacity and addressing the nation’s energy deficit.
Addressing delegates at the 7th Nigeria International Energy Summit in Abuja, the Director of the Decade of Gas Secretariat, Ed Ubong, expressed optimism about the government’s progress in offsetting its financial obligations to gas producers.
He emphasized the importance of aligning gas and power sectors to foster sustainable energy solutions.
As Nigeria grapples with the multifaceted challenges plaguing its energy landscape, the government’s commitment to settling outstanding gas debts marks a pivotal stride towards revitalizing the country’s power infrastructure and ensuring reliable electricity access for its citizens.
Nigeria Insurance Corporation Reimburses Depositors of 179 Closed Microfinance and Four Mortgage Banks
The Nigeria Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has announced the successful reimbursement of depositors affected by the closure of 179 microfinance banks and four mortgage banks across the country.
The reassuring news came during the 45th Kaduna International Trade Fair, where NDIC’s Managing Director, Dr. Bello Hassan, explained the corporation’s unwavering commitment to safeguarding depositors’ funds amidst financial uncertainties.
Dr. Hassan, represented by Hauwa Gambo, the NDIC’s Deputy Director of Communication, highlighted the corporation’s proactive measures in protecting the interests of depositors.
The introduction of the Single Customer View framework has expedited the process of reimbursing depositors of liquidated banks, ensuring swift and transparent transactions.
The corporation’s collaboration with the judiciary has yielded positive results, facilitating the speedy prosecution of failed insured banks and resolving long-standing cases of bank liquidations like Fortune and Triumph Banks.
This concerted effort has significantly enhanced the debt recovery rate, enabling NDIC to declare full liquidation dividends to uninsured depositors of over 20 deposit money banks.
Furthermore, NDIC has embraced digital remote payment strategies, streamlining electronic funds transfers to verified depositors’ alternate bank accounts.
The introduction of the ‘Deposit Tracer’ initiative in partnership with mobile operators aims to address apathy among depositors with small balances, providing accessible avenues for claiming funds trapped in closed banks.
The initiatives underscore NDIC’s proactive stance in safeguarding depositors’ interests and ensuring financial stability in Nigeria’s banking sector.
85.51 Million Nigerian Bank Customers Face Withdrawal Freeze Over NIN, BVN Deadline
As the March 1 deadline looms, an estimated 85.51 million Nigerian bank customers are facing the possibility of frozen accounts due to their failure to link their National Identification Numbers (NINs) and/or Bank Verification Numbers (BVNs) to their accounts.
Recent findings reveal the potential scale of the impending banking crisis.
Data from the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) indicates that Nigeria had approximately 146 million active individual bank customers as of December 2022.
However, by January 26, 2024, only 60.49 million BVNs were recorded on the NIBSS portal, leaving a significant portion unlinked.
Meanwhile, about 104 million NINs had been issued by December 2023, highlighting the disparity between NIN issuance and BVN linkage.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had earlier issued directives to banks, mandating them to restrict transactions on accounts lacking linked NINs and BVNs, with effect from March 1, 2024.
Any accounts found non-compliant risk being designated as ‘Post no Debit,’ rendering them unable to process further transactions.
Responding to the impending crisis, the Director-General of the National Identification Management Commission (NIMC), Abisoye Coker-Odusote, emphasized the need for the revalidation of Front-End Partners (FEPs) to ensure the integrity of the identity database.
She underscored the importance of NIN registration and urged collaboration with various stakeholders to expedite the process.
The Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida, reiterated the significance of linking NINs to SIM cards to enhance national security.
Telecom subscribers were urged to comply with the NIN-SIM linkage directive to avoid service disruptions.
Meanwhile, financial service providers like Opay have issued reminders of the impending restrictions, urging customers to comply with the linkage requirements.
Amidst concerns, some customers contemplate transferring funds to compliant accounts to avoid potential financial setbacks.
As the deadline approaches, stakeholders are intensifying efforts to mitigate the impact of the impending banking crisis on millions of Nigerians.
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