ABUJA, Nigeria – Nigeria’s 2020 Budget of N10,330,416,607,347.00 (Ten Trillion, Three Hundred and Thirty Billion, Four Hundred and Sixteen Million, Six Hundred and Forty-Seven Naira only was passed into law on Thursday at the upper and lower legislative Chambers.
The proposal, which was presented to the joint sessions of the Upper and Lower Chambers by President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, 8th October, 2019, was increased by N264.9 billion.
The bill, which had received legislative action at both chambers, would revert the nation’s financial year to run from January to December each year, beginning from January, 2020.
In the report submitted to the plenary by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations, Senator Jibrin Barau, which formed the fulcrum of Thursday’s debate, showed the following highlights in nation’s local currency viz: (1) Aggregate Expenditure – 10,594,362,364,830 (2) Statutory Transfers – 560,470,827,235 (3) Recurrent Expenditure – 4,842,974,600,640 (4) Capital Expenditure – 2,465,418,006,955 (5) Debt Servicing 2,725,498,930,000 (6) Fiscal Deficit – 2.28 trillion (7) Deficit/GDP 1.52%
The 2020 National budget was debated in pari-material with the Finance bill, Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) as well as Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) which was earlier approved by the National Assembly. Moreso, some key assumptions and parameters upon which the 2020 budget was hinged showed a slight difference in oil benchmark which was put at $US55 by the Executive while the National Assembly approved $US57.
Other items such as Crude Oil Production of 2.1mbp; GDP growth rate of 2.93%; Inflation rate of 10.81% and Exchange Rate of 305/US$1 were approved by the lawmakers as proposed by the Executive.
Committee’s report averred that the increase became necessary to allow intervention in critical areas such as National Security, Road Infrastructure, Mines and Steel Development, Health, Social needs and Water among others, particularly that it would aid development of the country as well.