N791.5bn spent on debt servicing in Q1

Debt Management OfficeDocuments from the Debt Management Office have revealed that Nigeria spent the sum of N791,545,016,039 on debt servicing between the year’s first quarter months of January and March 2020.

By contrast, the country spent N139.7 billion on capital expenditure in the same period.

N51 billion was budgedted for Universal Basic Education, while Basic Health Care Fund was allocated a measly N25 billion in the revised 2020 budget.

N2.9 trillion was set aside for debt servicing for 2020 as a result of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on the country’s revenue from crude oil price fluctuations and poor demand.

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DMO documents say Nigeria’s debt servicing is categorized into two; external debt service payment and domestic service payment. While domestic debt servicing gulped N609,134,926,039 within the months under consideration, external debt servicing took $472,565,000 (N182,410090,000).

Between January and March 2020, Nigeria paid N111,605,032,486.46 as interest on NTBs, and N488,935,140,628.54 as interest on FGN Bonds.

FGN Bonds gulped N392,794,020.32 as interest in the first quarter of the year, while Nigeria also paid N8,201,958,904.11 rentals on FGN Sukuk bonds in March.

However, no payments were made in the first two months.

By Daniel Ojukwu

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