Friday, February 17, 2017

Senate Shocked As Debt Profile Up By 6:53% Under Buhari

Nigerian senate was shocked the Debt Management Office (DMO) on Thursday said the country’s total public debt stock comprising external and domestic borrowing of the Federal Government, 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) is now $57.39billion equivalent to N17.36 trillion.

The Director-General of the DMO, Dr. Abraham Nwankwo released the figure when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debt, chaired by Senator Shehu Sani (APC, Kaduna) for budget defence.

He said the figure was for December 31st 2016.

Senator Shehu Sani expressed concern over the increasing size of the country’s debt stock saying “There is a genuine fear on the size of our debt which is on the increase and pressure of the interest on our budget which the National Assembly is concerned with.
“We will not accept any borrowing just for the sake of it but to finance critical sectors and infrastructure that will impact positively on the economy, thereby reducing the suffering of the masses.”

Nwankwo said the figure was made up of external debt stock of $11.41billion (N3.48trillion) and domestic debt stock of $45.98billion (N13.88trillion).

“The disaggregated external debt stock of the 36 states and FCT as at June 2016 was $3.65billion while the disaggregated domestic debt stock of the states and FCT as at September, 2016 was $2,822.89billion,” he said.

He said the external debt stock increased from $10.71billion as at December 31st 2015 to $11.41billion last year, about 6.53 percent.

“This was as a result of the net effect of the additional disbursements of $1,855.21million on the existing and newly approved loans from January to December, 2016 taking into account the principal repayment of $116.53million as well as cross-exchange rate movements between the different currencies in the loan portfolio,” he said.

He said the Federal government domestic debt stock was N11.06trillion as at December 31, 2016 but that it was N8.84trillion in December 2015.

“The increase of about 25.11 percent in the domestic debt stock was as a result of net issuances of FGN bonds and NTBs, taking into account the redemption of the matured treasury bonds. The FGN bonds and the NTBs that matured during the period were refinanced,” he said.

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