Experts Criticize Budget 2022 Performance As Buhari Presents 2023 Budget

Experts Criticize Budget 2022 Performance As Buhari Presents 2023 Budget

Experts are exposing performance shortcomings in the 2022 budget as the two chambers of the National Assembly gather ready to receive the president’s proposed budget for the 2023 fiscal year next month.

Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, the Minister Of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, revealed that N19.76 trillion in total spending is anticipated for the 2023 fiscal year.

Depending on the decision the federal government makes on the payment of fuel subsidies, the budget deficit for the fiscal year 2023 might range between N11.30t and N12.4t.

However, experts have kept finding problems with how the 2022 budget has performed. One of the crucial elements blamed for the 2022 budget’s subpar performance is the ratio of debt service to revenue.

Within the first four months of 2022, according to BudgIT, a civic-tech organization that is a pioneer in advocating for openness and accountability in Nigeria’s public finance management, the debt service-to-revenue ratio reached alarming proportions.

According to reports, the nation’s current debt service, which was N1.94 trillion from January to April 2022, is greater than 100% of the country’s revenue, which was N1.64 trillion during the same time period.

Nigeria’s national debt increased to N41.6 trillion in the first quarter of 2022 from N39.56 trillion at the end of December 2021, placing tremendous pressure on debt servicing. According to budget performance data examined by The Guardian, the prorated prediction for gross oil and gas revenue for the entire year 2022 was N9.37 trillion, but as of April 30, 2022, only N1.23 trillion had been realized—a performance of just 39%.

According to the reports, oil revenue underperformed because of severe shortfalls in oil output, including shutdowns brought on by pipeline vandalism and crude oil theft, as well as high fuel subsidy costs caused by higher landing costs for imported goods.

Non-oil taxes also performed on average 92.6 percent below expectations, significantly falling short of targets. According to experts, the performance of the budget during the past year has been less than ideal.

After carefully examining two federal ministries—the Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investments and its counterpart, the Ministry of Finance, Budget, and National Planning—they came to their conclusion.

Prof. Sheriffdeen Tella, an Economics Professor at Olabisi Onabanjo University, claimed in his submission that the trade and industry sector had not performed better than other sectors and that the oil subsector, which typically dominates trade, had not performed well despite the opportunity because Nigeria was unable to meet OPEC crude oil allocations. According to Tella, the non-oil industry was unable to fill the gap because of the global economy’s weak growth.

 

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