Nigeria Plans $34 Billion Budget to Raise its Economy
In order to boost economic growth, Nigerian President Bola Tinubu intends to increase spending by nearly a fifth in his first budget since taking office in May.
This came to light during Monday’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting at the presidential palace in Abuja.
This stands in contrast to the N21.8 trillion budget that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has currently authorized.
After the FEC meeting, Minister Bagudu emphasized to state house media that the government is committed to presenting the budget to the National Assembly by the end of the year.
Atiku Bagudu, the minister of budget and national planning, stated during a briefing in Abuja, the capital of the country, on Monday that Tinubu, whose economic reforms have garnered the favor of investors, is counting on the 26 trillion naira ($34 billion) expenditure plan to help lift GDP to 3.76% in 2024. This contrasts with the 2.9% growth the IMF has projected for 2023.
While the 2024 proposed spending plan is almost a fifth bigger in naira terms than the one approved by lawmakers for this year, it is smaller in dollar terms. That is because the naira has lost 40% of its value since the central bank decided in mid-June to allow it to trade more freely against the dollar.
The budget assumes an average exchange rate of 700 naira to the dollar, a more conservative figure when compared to the 1,048 naira it traded at on the parallel market on Monday.
Bagudu said the government is optimistic that its engagement with investors will result in greater foreign exchange inflows and a stronger naira. The inflows “will help us to clear the backlog and the exchange rate will begin to reflect a stronger value than the current weakness,” he said.
Other assumptions in the 2024 spending plan include an average inflation rate of 21%, an oil price of $73.96 per barrel and average oil production of 1.78 million barrels a day.
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