We implemented notable reforms to support economic recovery, resilience- Minister
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, said the ministry under her watch implemented notable reforms to support economic recovery and resilience in the country.
Ahmed, at a send-forth ceremony organised in her honour on Saturday night in Abuja, said that the ministry achieved a lot under her watch.
She said that the ministry was committed to medium-term revenue and expenditure frameworks to strengthen public finances, create fiscal space and keep public debt on a sustainable path.
“Our dedication to revitalising revenues over the medium term, led to improved non-oil revenue under the Strategic Revenue Growth Initiative (SRGI).
“In spite revenue challenges, government consistently met its debt service commitments, while post financing assessments showed adequate capacity to repay loans,” she said.
The minister said that under her watch, the economic growth gained firmer footing, with focus shifted towards fiscal consolidation.
“ This included streamlining new taxes and intensifying expenditure control measures, with resolute commitment to advancing expenditure rationalisation initiatives.
“The passage of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021, which took effect in early 2022, and the consequent establishment of the NNPC Limited, are expected to increase investments and strengthen oil revenues.
“Additionally, there were executive orders on promoting procurement by government agencies, the promotion of transparency and efficiency in the business environment,” Ahmed said. She said that the past eight years had been eventful, by the profound impact of two recessions stemming from the 2016 oil price collapse and the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.
“In spite of these challenges, swift monetary and fiscal responses facilitated the economy’s prompt recovery from these downturns.
‘For us, the story has been that of resilience and managing multiple challenges across very difficult times,” the minister added.
Ahmed said that the economic diversification remained the key priority for Nigeria.
“Consequently, our development plans encompassed initiatives for developing supportive infrastructure and reforms aimed at reducing dependency on oil.
”They also are aimed at further alleviating inequality and unemployment, establishing robust and effective institutions, and addressing governance issues,” she said.
Ahmed said that none of these accomplishments would have been possible without the strong support of all the stakeholders.
“ I am grateful to Almighty Allah for everything, the president for trusting me with the position, to my lovely husband for always supporting and understanding the nature of my job.“ Also, to my family, friends and colleagues you all made my job easy,” she said.
The Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba, said: ” Though we faced a lot of challenges, we pulled through.
“ We developed the National Development Plan (NDP) 2021-2025, a Medium Term Plan and agenda 2050 for the country to follow.
“We developed a web app-THE EYEMARK- to enable Nigerians in the country and in the diaspora to track execution of capital projects and report progress to government, among other achievements,” Agba said. He said the outgoing government had achieved a lot and commended the president for all his efforts towards his administration.