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‘FG spent N1.8b on servicing domestic debts in 2018’

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The Federal Government spent over N1.8 billion to service its domestic debts in 2018 as against the N1.5 billion expended for same purpose in 2019, the 2018 Annual Report and Audited Accounts by the Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC) have revealed.

‘’A total sum of N1. 797.91 billion was used to service the Federal Government of Nigeria’s domestic debts in 2018, depicting an increase by N321.68 or 21.79 per cent over the total sum of N1.476,22 billion paid in 2017”, the documents stated.

The FRC was established by the Fiscal Responsibility Act (FRA) 2007 with a mandate to monitor and enforce the provisions of the Act to, among other things, provide for prudent management of the nation’s resources as well as ensure a long-term macroeconomic stability of the economy.

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The FRC report, which was obtained by The Guardian yesterday in Abuja, also indicated that more foreign loans were taken in 2018 to finance maturing domestic loans, particularly treasury bills and government bonds with higher interest rates.A breakdown of the domestic debts’ servicing in the period under review by instruments shows that N1.116,21 billion was for the Federal Government bonds, representing 62.08 percent of the total local debts’ servicing for the year.

The document noted that N640.68 billion was expended in servicing the country’s treasury bills (NTB) and accounted for 35.64 per cent of the FGN’s total domestic loan servicing in 2018 while the repayment of treasury bonds amounted to N22.00 billion or 1.22 per cent of the total government total domestic debts servicing during the period.

According to the report, the repayment of the FGN Sukuk Bonds in 2018 amounted to N16. 48 billion which represents 0.92 per cent of the total domestic loan repayments in the year while the settlement of the Green Bonds amounted to N1.44 billion, signifying a 0.08 per cent of the total domestic loan repayment of the Federal Government during the period.

It however, noted that the FGN savings bond received the least repayment of N1.09 billion, accounting for only 0.06 per cent of the total repayment of government’s domestic debt in 2018. In his comments, the FRC Acting Chairman, Victor Muruako, expressed dissatisfaction at the compliance response of ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs), which remained low.

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