Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu plans to ramp up spending by almost a fifth in his first budget since he was inaugurated in May to boost economic growth.
(Bloomberg) — Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu plans to ramp up spending by almost a fifth in his first budget since he was inaugurated in May to boost economic growth.
Tinubu, whose economic reforms have won approval from investors, is banking on the 26 trillion naira ($34 billion) spending plan to help raise growth to 3.76% in 2024, Atiku Bagudu, the minister of budget and national planning said at a briefing in Abuja, the nation’s capital on Monday. That compares to 2.9% growth forecast by the International Monetary Fund for 2023.
While the 2024 proposed spending plan is almost a fifth bigger in naira terms than one approved by lawmakers for this year, it’s smaller in dollar terms. That’s as 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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