President Muhammadu Buhari has presented the 2022 budget estimate to a joint session of the National Assembly.
The proposed total expenditure for the coming year is put at N16.39 trillion with a crude oil benchmark price of $57 per barrel and daily oil production estimate of 1.88 million barrels (inclusive of condensates of 300,000 to 400,000 barrels per day).
The exchange rate is projected at N410.15 per dollar and projected GDP growth rate of 4.2 per cent with 13 per cent inflation rate.
The president said the total federally distributable revenue is estimated at N12.72 trillion in 2022 while total revenue available to fund the 2022 budget is estimated at N10.13 trillion. This includes Grants and Aid of 63.38 billion Naira, as well as the revenues of 63 Government-Owned Enterprises (GOEs).
The president earlier sought to increase the total expenditure from N13 trillion to 16.45 trillion.
Some reasons he gave for the increase are the allocation of N100 billion to the electoral umpire, INEC, for preparations for the 2023 general election, N50 billion to health workers for hazard allowance and other allocations to security agencies.
But the National Assembly, on Wednesday, approved N16.39 trillion – in the revised Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF).
He said the total federally-collectible revenue is estimated at N17.70 trillion Naira in 2022. While oil revenue is projected at 3.16 trillion, non-oil taxes estimated at N2.13 trillion Independent revenues are projected to be N1.82 trillion.
The budget contains a non-debt recurrent expenditure of N6.83 trillion, personnel cost of N4.11 trillion and debt service of N3.61 trillion.
Statutory transfers, the category to which the National Assembly falls, have been put at N768.28 billion while Pension, Gratuities & Retirees Benefits was put at N577 billion and Overhead cost at N792.39 billion.
The deficit, Mr Buhari said, will be financed mainly by new borrowings totalling N5.01 trillion.
“This represents 3.39 per cent of estimated GDP, slightly above the three per cent threshold set by the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007. Countries around the world have to of necessity over-shoot their fiscal thresholds for the economies to survive and thrive.
“We need to exceed this threshold considering our collective desire to continue tackling the existential security challenges facing our country.”
Mr Buhari said Nigerians are right to worry about the government’s attitude of borrowing but the nation’s borrowing is still within limit.
“We plan to finance the deficit mainly by new borrowings totalling N5.01 trillion, N90.73 billion from privatization proceeds and N1.16 trillion drawdowns on loans secured for specific development projects.
“Some have expressed concern over our resort to borrowing to finance our fiscal gaps. They are right to be concerned. However, we believe that the debt level of the Federal Government is still within sustainable limits. Borrowings are to specific strategic projects and can be verified publicly.”
The 2022 budget, which he titled “Economic Recovery and Sustainability,” is aimed at diversifying the economy, investing in critical infrastructure, strengthening security, reducing poverty and minimising regional, economic and social disparities.
The president also assured that defence and internal security will continue to be the government’s top priority in the coming year.
Further details of the Appropriation Bill, he said, will be sent to the National Assembly.
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