In the Fiscal Strategy Paper of the Federal Government, which was obtained from the Budget Office of the Federation in Abuja, it has been gathered that the Federal Government is planning to spend a total of N8.9 trillion in the 2019 fiscal period.
The N8.9 trillion to be proposed is an increase of N305.86 billion over the original estimates of N8.61 trillion presented to the legislature on November 7, 2017 by President Muhammadu Buhari for the 2018 fiscal year. The planned N8.9 trillion spending will be about N220 billion lower than the N9.12 trillion 2018 budget, which was passed by the National Assembly and assented to by the President.
The government is also planning to raise a total of N6.32 trillion as revenue next year to finance the budget. The N6.32 trillion, when compared to the N7.16 trillion revenue projection approved for the current year, represents a decline of about N840 billion.
As a result of the planned increase in spending, the fiscal deficit of the government was expected to rise from the current N1.9 trillion to N2.59 trillion in 2019. Recall that the National Assembly had passed the 2018 budget. The budget was passed 6 months after its presentation. There have been concerns about the government’s yearly increment in budgeting and also the country’s debts.
Details of the budget show that the National Assembly raised the 2018 budget by over ₦508 billion, bringing it to ₦9.12 trillion as against the ₦8.612 trillion presented by the President in November 2017.
The Director General of the Debt Management Office (DMO), Patience Oniha had disclosed that the government parastatal raised N410 billion from the domestic capital market to finance the 2018 budget. While addressing some newsmen in Abuja, Oniha said the country’s public debt stood at N22.37 trillion as at end of June 2018 ($73.31 billion) of which $22 billion was external.
According to DMO, Nigeria’s external debt was 26.64% as at the end of 2017 compared to 20.04% that was recorded in 2016. Domestic debt, however, decreased, standing at 73.36% less than the 79.96% that was recorded in 2016.