Emma Ujah, Abuja Bureau Chief
THE Federal Government has announced that a total of N1.6 trillion (N1,580,270,755,084.44) capital cost was released to Ministries, Departments and Agencies for the 2017 federal budget. Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, made this known in Abuja, yesterday.
The N1.6 trillion total capital releases for 2017 is higher than the N1.2 trillion (N1,219,471,747,443.00) total capital releases for 2016.
In the 2017 capital releases, Power, Works and Housing received the highest allocation of N523,011,701,723.25 which was 33.10 per cent of the total capital releases. The sector also received the highest releases in the 2016 capital budget, which was a total of N307,411,749, 682.00 (25.21 percent) of the 2016 capital budget.
Defence and Security received the second highest capital releases of N197,596,016,072.02 (12.50 per cent) in 2017, as against N77,532,885,729.00 (6.36 per cent) total releases the sector received in 2016.
Agriculture and Water Resources received a total of N149,485,276,897.37 (9.46 per cent) in 2017. The sector had received N143,121,925,241.00 (11.74 per cent) of the capital releases in 2016. Transportation received a total of N126,253,042,607.50 (7.99 per cent) of the 2017 capital releases as against the N171,900,597,013.00 (14.10 per cent) in 2016. Health and Education together received a total of N98,190,277,285.69 (6.21 per cent) for 2017 as against N56,270,030,992.00 (4.61 per cent) the sectors received in 2016. Other sectors combined received a total of N485,734,440,498.61, which was 30.74 per cent of the 2017 capital releases. In 2016, a total of N463,234,558,786.00 (37.99 per cent) was disbursed to these sectors.
The Minister of Finance noted that despite the economic challenges in 2017, the Federal Government was able to fully cash-back the capital releases.
She added that the sustained high allocations to key sectors were a reflection of the Federal Government’s commitment to infrastructure development in the country. The minister said that the Federal Government was working assiduously to attract private capital to complement government spending in these key areas.