Budget 2022: FG releases N1.7trn for capital expenditure
•Says FG not seeking debt restructure, relief
By Soni Daniel, Northern Region Editor
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, yesterday said that the Federal Government, FG, has so far released N1.7 trillion for capital expenditure out of the N2.7 trillion budgeted for 2022.
Ahmed also declared that the FG is not broke and hence not seeking debt restructuring or debt relief, stressing that the government has ability to repay its debts as at when due.
She stated this at a news conference in Abuja while presenting the scorecard of the Buhari administration in the finance sector from 2015 to 2022.
Ahmed pointed out that though the country does not generate enough revenue to meet its obligations in all sectors of the economy due to continued oil theft in the Niger Delta, the rising revenue from the non-oil sector has been effectively and judiciously managed to sustain the economy.
According to her, Nigeria does not need to either restructure its debt or seek for debt relief given the fact that it is following its debt management strategy closely at all times.
She stated: “We do not have to restructure because we have a debt strategy we are following closely. We make provision for debt servicing in our budget as a first line charge so that we do not default on any loan settlement be it external or local. And we have projections in meeting our loan settlements in the short and medium terms. This is the medium plan and it is frequently revised.
“So we are comfortable in terms of our ability to pay our debts. We have no fears about what is happening. So we are not going for any debt relief and we are not going for any debt restructuring.
“We continue to generate revenue on a monthly basis and these revenues are distributed at FAAC. Again, to continue with the tradition of transparency we actually disclose how much is distributed on a monthly basis to the various tiers of government. We have witnessed a significant increase in non-oil revenue.
“While oil revenue is underperforming because of criminality, the NNPC has reported that the criminality has been curtailed and we are already beginning to see the pick-up in the production volumes which is that more revenue has begun to come to the Federation Account”.