President Buhari urges speedy passage of revised 2020-2022 MTEF/FSP, budget

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The Presidency on Thursday urged the House of Representatives to speedily pass the 2020-2022 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF), and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) and the revised Appropriation Bill, 2020 for the fiscal year.

The President also sought approval of the House to enable goveenment obtain external loan facilities to the tune of $5.513 billion to finance capital aspects of the revised 2020 budget.

This was contained in a letter addressed to the Speaker of House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila by President Muhammadu Buhari, and read by the speaker at plenary on Thursday.

The President specifically said that the House should amend the revised MTEF/FSP 2020-2022 and Appropriation Act 2020 so as to accelerate its implementation.

According to him, it has become necessary to revise the 2020-2022 MTEF/FSP, and amend the 2020 Appropriation Act in view of the decline in oil prices and the cut in Nigeria’s crude oil production quota occassioned by the Covid-19 pandemic.

He informed the lawmakers that the assumptions underlying the 2020 Appropriation Act are no longer sustainable and it is important to adjust expected revenues, considering the widespread disruptions in other economic activities as well as national trade and transportation, due to the measures implemented across the world to contain the pandemic.

He further said that it is imperative to reallocate resources in the Appropriation Act to ensure effective implementation of the emergency measures and other actions necessary to mitigate socio-economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Moreover the President has also requested for the approval of 5,513 billion dollars loan from four mulitrateral financial institutions across the globe under the external borrowing plan of the government to finance the budget.

The loans according to him became necessary in view of the sharp decline in crude oil prices at the international market due to the Covid-19 pandemic from the $57 benchmark projected in the budget to $25 current price, as well as sharp cut in production quota of crude oil.

According to the letters read on the floor, “the facility is in line with the provisions of sections 21 of the Debt Management Office Act 2003 and 41 of the Fiscal Responsibility Act FRA Act 2007 and would be financed by the following institutions as follows”: International Monetary Fund (IMF) $400 million, World Bank. $1.5 billion, African Development Bank $500 billion and Islamic Development Bank $113 billion.

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