Nigeria’s debt to hit N77tr by May

The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will be leaving behind a debt of N77 trillion.

It will be made up of N44.06 trillion total debt stock as of the third quarter of 2022, N22.7 trillion Ways and Means borrowed from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), projected new borrowings of N10.57 captured in the 2023 budget and issuance of promissory notes.

Director General of the Debt Management Office (DMO), Ms Patience Oniha, projected that this administration will be bequeathing a total national debt stock of about N77 trillion.

The DMO chief spoke at the “Public Presentation and Breakdown of the Highlights of the 2023 Appropriation Act” in Abuja on Wednesday.

Oniha argued that if the National Assembly approves the securitisation of the N22.7 trillion Ways and Means debt secured from the CBN, the figure included in the public debt.

“You will see a significant increase in public debt to N77 trillion that is if you add the new borrowing depending on market conditions of N5 trillion.

“The other area of the debt stock we are trying to highlight is to say, the debt stock is also growing from the issuance of promissory notes which are not true borrowing as such by the government”.

She added: “While the debt is growing because there is new borrowing, revenue is receiving significant attention.

“Like DMO always says, you can’t talk about debt without talking about revenue. We need the two to work together.”

Defending the President’s request to the National Assembly to approve the securitisation of the N22.7 trillion Ways and Means borrowed from the CBN, Ms Oniha said that it “would significantly reduce the cost of servicing the loan”.

Credit: The Nation