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2018 Budget Contains N460bn Wasteful Expenditure – Group



  • 2018 Budget Contains N460bn Wasteful Expenditure – Group

The Centre for Social Justice on Tuesday picked holes in the 2018 budget proposals presented by President Muhammadu Buhari to the National Assembly, stating that the fiscal document contained over N460bn “frivolous, inappropriate, unclear and wasteful” expenditure.

The group stated this in a report made available to our correspondent by its Lead Facilitator, Mr. Eze Onyekpere.

The group analysed the 2018 budget of N8.6tn, which is currently before the National Assembly.

The group called on the lawmakers to critically review the fiscal document in order to remove all the expenditure that would not impact positively on the lives of the people.

It recommended that many expenditure in the budget should be slashed, adding that this would save the country about N219.3bn.

The report read in part, “The Centre for Social Justice and its partners in the Citizens Wealth Platform have identified frivolous, inappropriate, unclear and wasteful expenditure in the federal Appropriation Bill. The documentation is sent to every member of the National Assembly to assist the passage of the annual budget.

“The term frivolous implies not having any serious purpose or value as some of the expenditure proposals cannot be supported by any high level national plan or policy. They ignore the pressing problems and challenges, while providing for the fancy, whims and caprices of the budget crafters.

“A total of N219.37bn has been identified as resources to be saved and reprogrammed by the National Assembly. We hope that the National Assembly will do the needful for the common good.”

It claimed that it had become a tradition among Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government to allocate huge sums of money for expenditure items that were unclear in the budget.

Some of them are purchase of motor vehicles, software, computers, uniforms and clothing, refreshment and meals, monitoring and evaluation, as well as welfare packages.

Others are maintenance of office buildings/residential quarters, budget preparation expenses, residential rents, and capacity building, among others.

Giving a breakdown of some of the expenses that made up the unclear expenditure, the report stated that in the State House for instance, the sum of N907.1m, which was allocated for phased replacement of vehicle spare parts and tyres, was bogus and should be reduced by 50 per cent to N453.55m.

It added that the N4.86bn that was budgeted for annual routine maintenance of the Villa should be reduced by 80 per cent to N972m.

The CSJ said the reduction in the maintenance cost of the Villa by 80 per cent would result into a saving of N3.88bn that could be channelled into other developmental projects.

It added, “Annual routine maintenance cannot cost so much. And there is a second sum for maintenance of office and residential quarters.

“Reduce the first and second votes by 80 per cent. There is a further sum of N92m for ‘other maintenance services’ after providing for vehicle, equipment, generator maintenance.”

The report also stated that the huge vote of N51.75bn for the Sustainable Development Goals called for vigilance and proper oversight on the part of the legislature after approval.

It noted that for over 13 years, this type of vote had been approved without Nigerians getting value and improvement in their lives for the large sums of money.

The report also cited the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, whose budget included several requests for money without specific details about what they were voted for.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Nasdaq,, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Nigeria’s Q3 Foreign Trade Skyrockets: Crude Oil Revenue Surges by 83.23% to N8.54tn



Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers

Nigeria’s foreign trade expanded by 53.16% year-on-year to N18.80 trillion in the third quarter (Q3) of 2023.

The surge was primarily propelled by an impressive 83.23% spike in crude oil revenue to N8.54 trillion, a substantial increase from N4.66 trillion recorded in the same quarter of the previous year.

This was reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its ‘Foreign Trade in Goods Statistics (Q3 2023)’ that highlighted the nation’s trade balance and economic outlook.

The report noted that total exports rose by 60.78% to N10.35 trillion.

Mr. Gbenga Komolafe, CEO of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, emphasized the importance of viability in retaining exploration leases.

He said, “Based on PIA (Petroleum Industry Act), the commission is focused on delivering value for the nation so only firms that are technically and financially viable will keep their leases.”

The report outlined the dominance of crude oil in exports, constituting 82.50% of total exports, while non-crude oil products contributed N677.57 billion or 6.55% of total exports. The positive trade balance stood at N1.89 trillion.

The top five export destinations for Nigeria included Spain, India, The Netherlands, Indonesia, and France, collectively accounting for 45.98% of total export value.

On the import side, China, Belgium, India, Malta, and the United States were the major sources, comprising 57.18% of total imports, valued at N4.84 trillion.

While these promising trade figures indicate a robust economic performance, challenges in the oil sector persist, with the country’s crude oil production below the 2023 target.

The government’s commitment to increasing production aims to boost revenue and fund strategic national projects, as highlighted by Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Heineken Lokpobiri.

The surge in exports, possibly linked to the recent naira devaluation, underscores the intricate relationship between economic policies and trade dynamics, shaping Nigeria’s economic trajectory.

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Federal Government to Earn Over $500 Million in INTELS Deal



intels nigeria limited

The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has unveiled an agreement with INTELS Nigeria Limited that is set to bring substantial financial gains to the federal government.

The comprehensive deal, negotiated over weeks, not only resolves a contentious pilotage contract but also promises to bolster Nigeria’s coffers by over $500 million.

The accord encompasses a multifaceted approach to financial benefits, including an interest waiver of $193,317,556 and a significant reduction in the interest rate on outstanding debt.

The debt, originally at a six-month London Interbank Offer Rate (LIBOR) + 6.5%, has been revised to a more favorable six months Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) + 3%.

Such financial restructuring is anticipated to save the government a staggering $326.8 million over the next 15 years.

NPA, in a detailed breakdown, elucidated that the agreement further involves spreading the debt repayment over 15 years, with the initial two years being interest-free.

Additionally, there is a commendable reduction in the commission percentage, dropping from 28% to 24.5%, a move that aligns with the government’s commitment to optimizing financial resources.

The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola, received accolades for his tireless efforts in steering the negotiations to a successful conclusion. NPA expressed gratitude for his commitment to putting Nigeria first, emphasizing the critical role played by the minister in resolving the long-standing INTELS dispute.

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, however, denied benefiting from the reinstatement of INTELS contracts.

He clarified that his divestment from the company remains unchanged, emphasizing that he cannot be a beneficiary of the restored pilotage monitoring business.

NPA’s move to ensure a resolution with INTELS is not only seen as a financial triumph but also as a strategic step towards fostering economic stability.

The agreement is poised to have a positive ripple effect on revenue generation and underscores the government’s commitment to diplomatic and economically viable solutions.

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Nigeria’s Refinery Output Plummets by 92% in a Decade



oil refinery

Nigeria’s local refineries recorded a 92% decline in output over the past decade, according to the Statistical Review of the World Energy 2023 report.

The data unveils a drastic drop in refining capacity, plummeting from 92,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2012 to a mere 6,000 bpd in 2022.

This disconcerting revelation is echoed in the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC) Annual Statistical Bulletin 2023, which underscores an 81% reduction in Nigeria’s crude oil refining capacity, falling from 33,000 bpd in 2018 to 6,000 bpd in 2022.

Despite owning four government-owned refineries, located in Port Harcourt, Warri, and Kaduna, with a collective capacity of around 4.45 million bpd, Nigeria continues to heavily rely on importing refined petroleum products.

This dependency raises questions about the nation’s resilience and self-sufficiency in the energy sector.

Minister of State for Petroleum, Heineken Lokpobiri, had previously announced plans for the Port Harcourt refinery to commence operations by the end of the current year, with the Warri and Kaduna refineries expected to follow suit in early 2024.

This revelation comes amid rising concerns over Nigeria’s continued reliance on importing refined petroleum products, even with substantial investments in refinery infrastructure.

The decline in local refining exacerbates the challenge, leading to soaring petrol prices and a strain on the nation’s economic landscape.

Industry experts stress the urgency of revitalizing local refineries, emphasizing that dependence on imports is neither sustainable nor conducive to the country’s economic well-being.

As Nigeria grapples with the complexities of its energy dynamics, the impending revival of local refineries stands out as a crucial solution to navigate these challenging times.

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