Nigeria to auction N142 billion treasury bills

Central bank of Nigeria (CBN)
Central bank of Nigeria building

The federal government hopes to raise about N142.43 billion (about $453.60 million) from the issuance of short-term treasury bills to be auctioned on February 15, the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, said on Tuesday.

The auction is expected to raise about N32.43 billion in three-month debt, N30 billion in six-month bills and N80 billion in one-year notes, through the Dutch auction system.

Payment will be due the day after the auction.

The treasury bills are to fund the national budget deficit, manage banking system liquidity squeeze and curb rising inflation in the economy.

With an outlay of N7.298 trillion, the 2017 budget has overall projected fiscal deficit of N2.36 trillion (about 2.18 per cent of GDP).

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udoma, had said the deficit would be financed mainly by borrowings, projected at N2.32 trillion, consisting external sources (N1.067 trillion, or 46 per cent) and domestic sources N1.25 trillion.

During the consultative meeting with private sector operators on Monday, Mr. Udoma said the federal government was targeting at least seven per cent growth in the economy by 2020, amid efforts to lift the country out of its first recession in 25 years.

Besides, he said, as part of a medium-term economic recovery plan, government was also determined to ensure growth in the country’s gross domestic, stable foreign exchange rates, and a diversified and inclusive growth.

Last week, Nigeria raised a total of N302.4 billion in treasury bills, with more than the N242 billion planned due to strong demand for the one-year debt.

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