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Nigeria public debt rises to N87.38tn in three months-DMO

The DMO stated in a report that the debt comprises the N22.71 trillion in Ways and Means Advances from the Central Bank of Nigeria to the Federal Government.

Nigeria’s overall public debt reached N87.38 trillion at the end of the second quarter of 2023, according to data from the Debt Management Office (DMO).

Comparing the figure to the N49.85 trillion recorded at the end of March 2023, it shows a rise of 75.29%, or N37.53 trillion.

The DMO released the report on Thursday.

It said, “Nigeria’s total public debt stock as at June 30, 2023, was N87.38 trillion ($113.42 billion). It comprises the total domestic and external debts of the Federal Government of Nigeria, the thirty-six states, and the Federal Capital Territory. The major addition to the Public Debt Stock was the inclusion of the N22.712 trillion securitized FGN’s Ways and Means Advances.”

New borrowings by the Federal Government and the sub-nationals from domestic and foreign sources were also mentioned in the report as additional increases to the debt stock.

It added, “The reforms already introduced by the present administration and those that may emerge from the recommendations of the Fiscal Reform and Tax Policies Committee, are expected to impact debt strategy and improve debt sustainability.”

Following the National Assembly’s approval of former President Muhammadu Buhari’s request to restructure the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Ways and Means Advances, the DMO had previously predicted that the nation’s public debt load may reach N77 trillion.

The Ways and Means Advances is a loan facility through which the CBN finances the shortfalls in the government’s budget.

The Director-General of the DMO Patience Oniha,, stated that the debt would be N70 trillion without N5 trillion in additional borrowing and N2 trillion in promissory notes during a public presentation of the 2023 budget organized by the former Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Dr. Zainab Ahmed.

The most recent statistics, however, revealed that the DMO’s prediction was N10.38 trillion lower than the existing debt stock, which is N87.38 trillion.

According to the report’s findings, Nigeria has a combined internal and external debt of N54.13 trillion and N33.25 trillion, respectively.

External debt accounts for 38.55% of total debt, while domestic debt accounts for 61.95%.

According to the report, domestic debt rose by 79.18% from N30.21 trillion, while external debt increased by 69.28% from N19.64 trillion in Q1 2023.

Writing by Jennifer Ogor, editing by Daniel Adejo