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Compare Nigeria’s Economy With Sudan’s, Not South Africa’s – Minister

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Compare Nigeria's Economy With Sudan's, Not South Africa's - Minister

The Minister of Finance and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, has said that Nigerians should compare their economy with that of Sudan and not South Africa’s.

According to Ahmed, South Africa is a tax-based economy, while Nigeria on the other hand is competing with Sudan in the area of taxation.

The minister disclosed this on Monday while defending the government’s Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper.

According to the minister, most high earners in Nigeria are not paying taxes, particularly at the state level.

READ ALSO: How Govt Can Attract Investments To Nigeria’s Economy – Okonjo-Iweala

“The comparison between Nigeria and South Africa cannot be done. The federal government national budget and South African national budget are not proportionate. It is important to state that the South African budget is largely funded by taxes, unlike Nigeria’s economy. The tax base in Nigeria is still narrow. The tax rate is still quite low, VAT is still 7.5%, the average VAT rate in West Africa region is 15%.

“We have the lowest tax rate in the world, second only to Sudan. Even Sudan is increasing its VAT rate. We need to all efficiently improve tax collection. In Nigeria, PIT is very low. Individuals of high networth—only a few of them are paying taxes,” he said.

This comment is coming amid plans by the federal government to borrow over N11 trillion to finance the deficit in the proposed expenditure of the federal government.

In the document submitted to the lawmakers, the federal government plans to borrow N9.32 trillion comprising N7.4 trillion from the domestic market and N1.8 trillion from foreign sources. The government is expected to generate N206.1 billion from privatization proceeds and N1.7 trillion multilateral project-tied loans.

She added that the government cannot afford to keep subsidy beyond June 2023. As the government is not planning for subsidy beyond mid 2023.

 

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Outage Looms As Electricity Workers Threaten To Shut Down National Grid

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BREAKING: National Grid Collapses Again, Triggers Nationwide Outage

Nationwide outage may soon occur as the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) has again threatened to shut down the national grid.

The electricity employees are disappointed that the two-week given to the Federal Government to resolve the crisis has elapsed.

While briefing reporters in Kaduna on Thursday, Comrade Dukat Ayuba, the zonal organizing secretary, North West of NUEE, explained that while negotiation was still on-going, the shutdown of the national grid was imminent.

 READ ALSO: Why Shutdown Of Electricity Nationwide Will Continue – Workers

According to him, the so-called privatization of the sector was a scam, explaining that nine (9) years after, nothing has changed to improve its activities, especially to the consumers of electricity.

He added: “That was why we kicked against privitazing the distribution sector, because the investors don’t have the capacity and expertise. As committed Nigerians, we advised government against it. But the government was hell- bent on doing so.”

He noted that the investors were still operating with obsolete equipment dating back to 35, 40, and 50 years, stating that one would expect that with the coming of the investors, they would replace the obsolete equipment but nothing had been done.

He regretted that the nation still generates 5,000 megawatts of electricity, saying that it is the same 5,000 megawatts that they used to generate, with no benefit from privitazation.

He added that the company now generates megawatts with higher tariffs, bringing hardships to the homes of millions of Nigerians and that is what all Nigerians are experiencing at the moment.

According to Wisdom Nwachukwu, a member of Central Executive Committe, the federal government now wants to sell the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).

He stated that they were going behind meeting with some stakeholders and that they would not allow that, as they were patriotic Nigerians that want the best for the country.

READ ALSO: Nationwide Blackout Begins As Grid Collapses

Ado Gaya, the Vice President, North West, NUEE, while elaborating further, revealed that the 16 months remunerations demanded by the electricity workers are their legitimate earnings which involved 55,000 workers.

He explained that nine years after, the workers have not received a dime, regretting that many of the workers have died, while those who were laid off are suffering with their families receiving nothing to help them make a living.

 

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BREAKING: Nigeria’s Debt Hits N42.84 Trillion

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BREAKING: Nigeria's Debt Hits N42.84 Trillion

Nigeria’s total public debt stock is now N42.84 trillion ($103.31 billion), according to the Debt Management Office (DMO).

It was N41.60 trillion ($100.07 billion) in March.

According to a statement from DMO’s website on Tuesday, the total debt represents the domestic and external debt stocks of the federal government, the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

It noted that while the foreign component of the debt remained at the same level of N16.61 trillion ($39.96 billion), the local component increased to N26.23 trillion ($63.24 billion).

The local component of the country’s borrowings was N24.98 trillion ($60.1 billion) as of March 30. The DMO said a larger percentage of the external debts were concessional and semi-concessional loans.

READ ALSO: Nigeria’s Public Debt Hits N38.005 Trillion

“Over 58 per cent of the external debt stock are concessional and semi-concessional loans. They were obtained from multilateral lenders such as the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Afrexim and African Development Bank, and bilateral lenders including Germany, China, Japan, India and France,” explained the DMO.

It added that the total domestic debt stock increased from N24.98 trillion ($60.1 billion) in March to N26.23 trillion ($63.24 billion) in June, pointing out that it “is due to new borrowings by the FGN to part-finance the deficit in the 2022 Appropriation (Repeal and Enactment) Act, as well as new borrowings by state governments and the FCT.”

The DMO further mentioned that the total public debt-to-GDP ratio remained within limits, at 23.06 per cent, while debt-service-to-revenue was still high.

It, however, assured that President Muhammadu Buhari’s regime is committed to increasing revenue to reduce the amount that went into debt servicing.

“The debt-to-GDP as of June 30 was 23.06 per cent compared to the ratio of 23.27 as of March 30. It remains within Nigeria’s self-imposed limit of 40 per cent,” the DMO noted.

“While the federal government continues to implement revenue-generating initiatives in the non-oil sector and block leakages in the oil sector, debt service-to-revenue ratio remains high.”
(NAN)

 

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23 Million Jobs Lost Under Buhari – Abubakar Atiku

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Only Ayu Can Decide To Resign As PDP Chair - Atiku

Over 23 million Nigerians have lost their jobs since Muhammadu Buhari became the nation’s president, according to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.

Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, also lamented that Nigeria’s economy was “crawling” instead of growing, and Nigerians were miserable under Buhari’s rule.

“The Nigerian economy is crawling rather than growing,” the PDP standard-bearer stated.

The former vice president noted that per capita income, “a measure of citizens’ well-being, has progressively fallen since 2015 because of declining output and a fast-growing population.”

He added, “Nigerians are worse off today than they were in 2015.”

READ ALSO: Keyamo Once Sued Tinubu For Certificate Forgery – Atiku Campaign Spokesman

“More Nigerians are poorer and more miserable today than in 2015,” Abubakar further stated.

“Basic commodities are now beyond the reach of the average Nigerian. A loaf of bread costs 100 per cent more today than it did in 2020.”

Abubakar, Nigeria’s vice president between 1999-2007, disclosed this while speaking on Tuesday at the Private Sector Economic Forum organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) in Lagos.

“Under the present administration, our people are not working. More than 23 million people are out of jobs,” Abubakar claimed. “In just five years between 2015 and 2020, the number of fully employed people dropped by 54 per cent, from 68 million to 31 million people.”

The opposition presidential candidate was once in the same party, APC, as Buhari.

On Friday, however, Buhari claimed the Nigerian economy was growing under his leadership despite the COVID-19 pandemic disruption, Russia-Ukraine war and internal crises besetting the country.

“In this period, challenges faced by the world have been many, including lockdowns as COVID-19 raged; disruptions to supply chains around the world, and sharp fluctuations in prices,” the Nigerian leader explained.

“Our economy continues to grow despite the adverse effects of rising interest rates, a stronger U.S. dollar and higher inflation across the world.”

 

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