Nigeria’s foreign reserves drop to $24.74billion – Minister

Minister of Budget and National Planning Sen. Udoma Udo-Udoma
Minister of Budget and National Planning Sen. Udoma Udo-Udoma

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udoma, says Nigeria’s foreign reserves have reduced from $26.51 billion from the second quarter of 2016 to $24.74 billion in September.

Mr. Udoma said this at the 57th annual conference of Nigeria Economic Society (NES) with the theme“the developmental state and diversification of the Nigerian economy’’ on Tuesday in Abuja.

He said Nigeria had revenue and foreign currency concentration problems, adding that diversification was the only solution.

The minister said due to four strategic pipeline terminals that were blow up, Nigeria had been unable to achieve its 2016 Budget production target of 2.2 million barrels a day.

Mr. Udoma said in August, the country was barely able to produce 1.1 million barrels.

“Last week production level rose up to 1.7 million barrels, still a far cry from the country’s target of 2.2 million barrel.

“We are taking a number of immediate measures to raise revenues to strategically spend our way out of recession.

“We are taking measures to address the disruption in Niger Delta to restore production.

“We are fast tracking our efforts to raise foreign currency loans that we have projected in the 2016 budget, from AfDB, World Bank, Chinese Exim Bank as well as Euro Bond issue.

“We are happy to note that the president of AfDB has announced that we should expect, among other facilities, a budget support of $1 billion dollars next month,’’ Mr. Udoma said.

He said the economic management team had been working to assemble a stimulus package to be raised from concessioning advance payment for licence renewals, use of recovered funds and some asset sales.

Mr. Udoma said the package was being worked upon and was yet to be finalised, adding that to achieve this speedily, “ we are working to fast track procedures through presidential directives and legislation.

“I want to emphasise that notwithstanding the current economic challenges we face, we are not discouraged at all and this is a crisis we must not waste.

“We should see this crisis as an opportunity for us as a country to make those major structural changes needed to change this economy for good.

“We should use this crisis to implement the reforms needed to unlock the economic potentials of the non-oil and high employment sectors.”

He said such would achieve a sustainable inclusive growth that would enable the majority of Nigerians to become more productive.

Mr. Udoma said the government was working on a programme with the private sector to launch made-in-Nigeria campaign.

He said that the intent of the programme was to encourage more production and consumption of made in Nigeria goods and services.

“We believe that with more patronage, Nigerian producers will be encouraged to improve the quality of their products.

“We should encourage the branding of Nigerian products by self-regulatory industry bodies such as wine makers have in France. Made-in-Nigeria should become a badge of quality.

“As the quality of our goods and service improve, both local and international demand for them will increase.

Mr. Udoma said high local demand would give Nigerian producers the platform to explore the export market.

He said one of the fastest routes to grow the economy and create jobs for teeming population was by pursuing export-led growth.

The minister said that the strategy held high promise for adding to the foreign reserves and further stabilising the Naria.

In January, the CBN estimated that Nigeria’s Forex earnings declined from around 3.2 billion dollars monthly to about one billion dollars monthly.

The CBN gave the figure as the reason it imposed the strict capital controls to protect the country’s reserves.

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  • abdul dull daura

    Somebody has gone to steal from our national reserve. It is obvious Buhari has not added anything to the reserve. He has been unable to generate. That is our problem and not the stolen funds.

  • ayobamiba

    Nigeria is a beautiful nation blessed by divinity and well structured or well arranged for super greatness. Check out Gods plan for the united states of the black race called Nigeria. The north was given a very big mass expanse of land suitable for all forms of agricultural activities to produce food for Nigeria and Africa, the people of the north were blessed with uncommon gift for agricultural activities ,from crop to seed to vegetables to fruits to animal and fishing ,no other section of Nigeria can beat the north in this activities. The Yoruba was given grace of wisdom and education to help use their exposure to help Nigeria in education, medicine, information, bureaucracy and politics to use their mouthpiece to ensure unity,fairness, equity and progress of Nigeria .the ibos were given the grace to market all the products of every section of Nigeria, from where they are produced to where they are needed for use and consumption. The south south were given uncommon gift to harvest all that waters can give and provide them for the good of Nigeria. If all this things work in equilibrium, Nigeria shall surpasse her great expectations. The challenge we have is that we have not gotten a good leadership that shall harness all these gifts to the benefits of Nigeria and black race.may God give this nation a leader that shall encourage all the zones of Nigeria to contributes her goods to this nation and not discriminate against the people of Nigeria based of zones,tribes,ethnicity and religion. May God destroy this evil affliction against Nigeria called APC which is an axis of evil causing divisions in Nigeria. May God raise for Nigerian nation a brand of leadership that fears God and loves the people of Nigeria sincerely without hating any section. May God help our nation.ok

  • ayobamiba

    2.2 trillion secretely borrowed in one year by this sleepwalking clueless man without even the knowledge of finance minister? The external reserve depleted from $32b which jonathan left to $24b in 16 months .Nigeria have entered the abyss.
    The home truth is that buhari came to power without any iota of knowledge or understanding about governance much more under democracy. Buhari added Sault to his grievous injury by recruiting hollow minded mental dwarfs as his empty change team.what have held buharis calamitous inept government for this long have been the highest level of highly crafted lies ,falsehoods, deception and false promises. the truth is that lies can’t hold the ground for too long ,that’s why buhari have no choice but to go to the authorized dealer and fill his tank. Good luck ebele Jonathan was Gods elect for Nigeria, he came with the highest level of sincerity, humility, love even for those who hate him and spitefully used him,he assembled a team of great thinkers and forward looking Nigerians not minding their tribe,religion and ethnic leaning and they fashioned out the most practicable ,realistic and intelligent transformation agenda for the progress,unity,prosperity ,just ,equitable and well being of nigerians nation ,within five years of his leadership of Nigeria, Jonathan grew Nigerian economy to become the biggest in Africa and 16 in the world.he developed many strategic plans to make Nigeria great and the era of jonathan remained the golden hour of nigerian nation ,until the birth of the a conspiracy called APC ,an axis of evil that spared no known and unknown evil in their quest for political power.the end albeit temporarily, evil triumphed in Nigeria and mediocrity,false promises and lies triumphed over intelligience,reality and truth via jegas criminal manipulation of electoral processes . before one year ,all the 16 years Democratic gains of Nigeria was reversed with the speed of light and Nigeria was ran aground .Today Nigeria have fallen into a big pit called recession. buhari have no other choice but to accept superior reasoning alternative to his tumbling and fumbling sleep walking inept government. The bewitched free educated imbeciles have managed nigeria for 16 months ,the result is eloquently unambigous ,nigeria have crashed .May God shine his merciful light upon the heart,eyes and ears of buhari so he can throw away his preconceived malicious agenda and with love and open mind continue with the well thought out transformation agenda of amiable Jonathans government. That’s the right way to go if buhari means well for Nigeria .if buhari can’t add to the good of Nigeria, let him not destroy this beautiful nation jega handed over to him.buhari is like a debilitating curse upon Nigeria.