UPDATED: Senate Approves 2020-2022 MTEF, FSP

A file photo of lawmakers in the Senate Chamber.

 

 

The Senate has approved the 2020-2022 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP).

The lawmakers gave the nod following a debate that lasted about two hours on Thursday at the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly in Abuja.

This followed the presentation of the report on the 2020-2022 MTEF FSP by the Senate Committee on Finance.

Shortly after Senator Solomon Adeola made the submission, the lawmakers passed all the recommendations in the report.

Some of the recommendations passed include the adoption of 2.18 MBPD as the daily production output in 2020.

The lawmakers also adopted the sum of $57 per barrel as crude oil benchmark price, as well as an exchange rate of N305 to a dollar for the 2020 fiscal year.

Also, the Senate passed a resolution that the saving on income accruing from the increase of the benchmark amounting to 172 billion be used to pay salaries and emolument of the proposed N30,000 new employees.

Shortly before the report was adopted, Senator Gabriel Suswam urged the committee to critically look into the issue of budget deficits.

He said, “We should look at the production sharing contract because we have been short-changed. We need to look into it so we can adequately fund our budgets

On his part, Senator Ibikunle Amosun believes Nigeria is on the path of greatness and will be great.

He, however, stressed that there was a need to improve revenue to fund projects and address the issue of borrowing.

The senator said, “We should change this mono-economy we are currently running. The enabler of development is infrastructure. If we must borrow, it must be for capital projects.”

Others who contributed to the debate were Senator Abdullahi Yahaya, Senator Emmanuel Bwacha, Senator George Sekibo, and Senator Ayo Akinyelure among others.

The Senate, thereafter, approved the recommendations of the Committees on Finance and National Planning on the 2020-2022 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP).

In his remarks, the Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan, informed his colleagues that there was a need for diversification in various sectors of the nation’s economy.

“We need to have an economy that provides jobs and creates wealth. We must ensure that our procurement process is well monitored.

“There must be efficiency and prudence in the way we do procurement,” the Senate President said.

Senate Committee Submits Report On 2020-2022 MTEF, FSP

File photo: [email protected]

 

 

The Senate Committee on Finance has presented its report on the 2020-2022 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP).

Senator Solomon Adeola (Lagos West) presented the report to the Senate during Thursday’s plenary at the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly in Abuja.

In the report, the committee observed that the salaries and remuneration for the proposed recruitment of 30 thousand personnel in the Police, Nigerian Army, Nigeria Immigration Service, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) were not captured in the MTEF and FSP.

The committee also expressed displeasure over the attitude of the Central Bank of Nigeria for the under-disclosure of the e-collection of stamp duties.

It also observed that the activities of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), as it relates to the cost of production, were shrouded in secrecy.

On Wednesday last week, lawmakers in the committee invited the CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, to clear the air on the issue.

Senate Passes MTEF, Increases Oil Price Benchmark

Senate Approves Electronic Voting For Elections
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The Senate has passed the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) for 2018 to 2020.

In passing the MTEF today, the Senate, however, increased the benchmark price of crude proposed by the Federal Government from 45 to 47 dollars per barrel.

Also, the lawmakers approved 2.3 million barrels oil production per day, an exchange rate of 305 naira to a dollar as well as N1.69 trillion new borrowing.

Details later…

National Assembly Passes MTEF, Increases Oil Benchmark

National-assembly-NASS-Senate-House-RepsThe National Assembly in Nigeria has passed the 2017-2019 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF), increasing the oil benchmark price of crude from $42.50 to $44.5 per barrel.

The Executive arm of government had set the benchmark price of crude at $42.50 per barrel in the revised 2017 MTEF which it sent to the National Assembly for approval and passage.

The National Assembly has also adopted and passed the 2017 borrowing plan of the government but insisted that they should be on project-tied basis.

Presenting the MTEF report at Wednesday’s legislative proceedings, the Chairman of the Committee on Finance, Senator John Enoh, told Senators that the committee also maintained the exchange rate of 305 Naira to a dollar set by the executive.

President Buhari Presents 2017 Budget To National Assembly

Buhari To Present 2017 Budget To National Assembly On WednesdayNigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, has presented the 2017 appropriation bill to a joint session of the National Assembly.

The President gave the assurance that there will be no such thing as budget padding in the document.

He condemned what he termed injecting rogue projects and figures into the financial document, saying it is unfair to Nigerians and detrimental to the growth of the economy.

Meanwhile the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udoma says the federal government intends to spend 10 trillion naira and will issue new oil licenses as part of efforts to explore new streams of revenues to fund the 2017 budget.

Udoma made this known when he appeared before the Senate joint committee on appropriation and finance to defend the revised Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and the Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP).

He said that the federal government would also review the current joint venture arrangements with oil companies, marginal oil fields as well as mount pressure on revenue generating agencies to surpass expected targets.

Udoma said a total of 10 trillion was being targeted by the federal government as revenue for the 2017 fiscal year.

According to him, out of this amount, about 5 trillion Naira is expected to be generated from the sale of crude oil. Non-oil revenues will rake in about 5.06 trillion Naira.

 

FG Reviews Parameters In MTEF

Medium Term Expenditure Framework, MTEFThe Federal Government has reviewed the parameters in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF).

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, made this known at an interactive session with the Senate Committee on Finance.

Speaking on Tuesday in Abuja, Senator Udoma noted that the Federal Government set the benchmark price of crude at $42.5 per barrel.

He adds that the new deficit to GDP ratio is now at 2.18 while the official exchange rate is now 305 up from 290 to a dollar earlier set.

Economic growth rate has also been reduced from 3.02% to 2.5%.

Meanwhile, the Senate is to probe the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) over the failure of one of its subsidiaries, the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) to remit over five billion dollars to the Federation Account.

Senator Dino Melaye, in a motion, alleged that since 2013 to date, the NPDC has continued to lift crude oil from divested oil wells OML 61, 62 and 63 worth over $3.487 billion without remitting to the Federation Account.

The Senate has mandated its committees of petroleum upstream and finance to investigate the level of the alleged corruption with a view to recovering every fund due to the Federation Account.

How Senate Criticised Executive’s Medium Term Expenditure Framework

Nigerian Senate on MTEF and FSPThe Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper  (FSP) prepared by Nigeria’s Executive Arm of Government has come under heavy criticism in the Senate.

Most Federal lawmakers say the policy document is a fraud, unrealistic and misleading.

Lawmakers on Wednesday deliberated on the MTEF and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) after accusing the executive of sending a document to them that was empty and lacked enough details for lawmakers to deliberate on.

Consideration of the documents that contained President Muhammadu Buhari 2017-2019 MTEF and FSP in accordance with the nation’s Fiscal Responsibility Act began after its details were presented to the Senators by the Deputy Senate Leader Na’Allah.

First to comment on the documents was the Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio.

He said: “We are looking at assumptions and assumptions might not be correct. Let us forward the documents to the appropriate Committee”.

Senator John Enoh told the Senators that the first thing to consider was the broader provisions of the MTEF and FSP, insisting that the executives must put in place negotiations for peace in the Niger Delta to achieve the 2.2 million barrels per day plan contained in the document.

In the documents the executives had presented different figures that will set the stage for the country’s annual budget.

The MTEF and FSP are proposing a budget that will be predicated on an oil revenue benchmark of $42.5 per barrel between 2017-2019, a Gross Domestic Product growth projection of 3.02%, an average oil projection of 2.2 million barrels per day (mbpd) in 2017, a 2.3 mbpd in 2018 and a 2.4 mpbd in 2019.

It also projects an average exchange rate of 290 Naira per dollar.

Host Of Criticism

But the lawmakers had a host of issues with the projections in the policy document.

 

Senator Isiaka Adeleke insisted that the 290 Naira per dollar was not achievable and unrealistic while Senator Dino Melaye described the document as ‘a lie’.

“It is not truthful and is not factual. What happened to the 2017 aspect of the MTEF 2016-2018 that was passed last year?

“We must form a level of compliance to the MTEF we passed last year, what is the amendment, is 290 Naira per dollar realistic?” he questioned.

While Senator Foster Ogola told the Senate that the documents were expected to present the real facts and figures of the economy another Senator, Hassan Mohammed, pointed out that the GDP proposed for 2016 was very unrealistic.

“I don’t understand the basis of it. We should look at the MTEF and FSP and tell the executive to urgently look at them. They are unrealistic,” Senator Mohammed stressed.

Senator Sam Anyanwu, on his part, expressed pleasure with the agreement seen between the members of different political parties in the Senate.

“For the first time Senators of both APC and PDP are agreeing that the MTEF and FSP are unrealistic.

“For me, there is no document before us the MTE and FFSP should be sent back to the executive,” he suggested.

Senator Joshua Lidani also suggested that the executives should rework the document before it would be treated by the Senate.

“The Government needs to take the bull by the horn, the Senate should either tinker adjust it or return it.”

Another Senator, Biodun Olujimi said: “The MTEF and FSP has not received the performance of the 2016 Budget to contrast with the 2017 budget.

“This is not what we expected, it is incomplete the MTEF and FSP is Voo Doo oriented”.

While criticisms continued to pour in, in reaction to the proposal of the Executive Arm of Government, some other Senators called for caution and proper consideration of the documents.

Ahmed Sani told the Senate that they could not just sit in the chambers and say that the document was not good.

“As a Certified Economists, I know that the government can do wonders in three months,” he insisted.

Senator Ahmed Lawan stressed the need for the Senate to be very practical “so that at the end of the day we will not worsen the state of things”.

Senator Gbenga Ashafa, who also spoke in support of the MTEF and FSP, urged his colleagues not to just criticise the documents entirely.

After the debate on the issue, Senate President Bukola Saraki appreciated his colleagues for their contributions and gave his opinion on the MTEF and FSP.

“Let me state some guiding principles. The MTEF and FSP are assumptions and estimates. Some are unrealistic. Oil Prices, GDP and Exchange Rates are unrealistic. We have the responsibility to work on it, use our Committees to look at the MTEF and FSP again and turn it around.

“We won’t take documents from the executive and send it back that way. Committees should take the comments of everybody and use it to decide.

“We should take a debate on 2016 budget performance before we do a debate on the report of the Committee,” Senate President Bukola Saraki concluded.

He then asked the Senate if the Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper document should be referred to the Committees on Finance and Appropriations for further legislative action and the Senators answered in the affirmative.

Senate Proposes New Budget Calendar

Senate, Budget CalendarNigeria’s Senate has proposed the adoption of a budget calendar that will begin with the submission of the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) by the second week in July and end with the President signing the Appropriation Bill into law by the third week of December annually.

The new measure was contained in a report submitted to the Senate President Bukola Saraki, on Monday by the Senator Ali Ndume-led Technical Committee on Reforming the Budget Process in Nigeria.

The strategies, which also include the provision of laws on development plans by the Federal Government, are aimed at easy and timely preparation of the budget and its efficient implementation.

The measures propose a budget calendar to ensure that the President assents to the appropriations law by the third week of December while the MTEF is submitted in the second week of July as the first step in the budget process.

The Senate would also discuss at plenary, other reports such as amendments of the relevant sections of the Nigerian Constitution and extant laws as well as enactment of new laws to improve the country’s budgetary process and align it to international best practices.

Other key recommendations in the report submitted on Thursday, November 3 are the proposed provision of a legal backing for national development plans and enactment of organic budget law to fix a realistic budget calendar.

Saraki Denies Friction Between Legislature And Executive

Saraki Denies Friction Between Legislature And ExecutiveSenate President, Dr Bukola Saraki has dismissed insinuation in some quarters of a frosty relationship between the executive and legislative arms of government.

Dr. Saraki was speaking to State House correspondents shortly after holding a meeting with the President, following the Friday jumat prayers in the Presidential Villa.

He said that both arms of government are working to move Nigeria forward.

He asked Nigerians not to politicize the Senate’s rejection of the President’s request for foreign borrowing.

“Don’t let us politicize very important issues. As we said, this is work in progress,” he said.

The Senate has explained that it turned down the external borrowing request due to “lack of documents supporting the request as referenced in the letter” from the President.

President Buhari wrote to the National Assembly seeking its approval for an external borrowing of 29.9 billion dollars to ensure the prompt implementation of projects.

The Senate had also accused the Executive of submitting an incomplete Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) to the National Assembly.

The National Assembly is required to pass the MTEF and FSP before working on the 2017 budget.

At Thursday’s legislative proceedings, Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, drew the attention of the lawmakers to a statement credited to the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udo Udoma, in a newspaper report.

Senator Ndume said that the Minister allegedly stated that the National Assembly was to be blamed for any delay in the presentation of the 2017 budget.

He also claimed that the MTEF, which the Executive submitted to the Senate was empty, adding that it has hindered work on the policy document.

The lawmaker alleged that attempts to get Mr Udoma to submit the necessary documents on the MTEF to the Senate have been unsuccessful.

He also purported that the Minister has not replied the letter or made himself available for scheduled meetings.

Senate Accuses Executive Of Submitting Incomplete MTEF

National Assembly, Senate, Executive, MTEF, FSPThe Nigerian Senate has accused the Executive of submitting an incomplete Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) to the National Assembly.

The National Assembly is required to pass the MTEF and FSP before working on the 2017 budget.

At Thursday’s legislative proceedings, Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, drew the attention of the lawmakers to a statement credited to the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udo Udoma, in a newspaper report.

Senator Ndume said that the Minister allegedly stated that the National Assembly was to be blamed for any delay in the presentation of the 2017 budget.

He also claimed that the MTEF, which the Executive submitted to the Senate was empty, adding that it has hindered work on the policy document.

The lawmaker alleged that attempts to get Mr Udoma to submit the necessary documents on the MTEF to the Senate have been unsuccessful.

He also purported that the Minister has not replied the letter or made himself available for scheduled meetings.

On Tuesday, October 4, President ‎Muhammadu Buhari forwarded to the National Assembly, the MTEF which showed a proposal to spend 6.8 trillion Naira on the 2017 budget with the debt servicing of 1.6 trillion Naira.

The receipt of the document was acknowledged at plenary by the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki.

Based on the MTEF, the oil benchmark price is put at $42.50 per barrel with 2.2 million barrels of oil production per day and an exchange rate of 290 Naira to a dollar.

The document also states that 65 billion Naira will be spent on the Amnesty Programme while 350 billion Naira will be spent on the special intervention programme in 2017.

2016 Budget Presentation: Nigerian Ministers React

2016 budgetMinisters of the Federal Republic of Nigeria have been reacting to the 2016 budget as presented to the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, December, 22.

Channels Television correspondent caught up with some of the ministers after the budget presentation at the National Assembly and they shared their views on the implementation of the budget and their expectations.

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udoma Udo Udoma explained that the need to increase the investment on infrastructure as a way to revive the economy was highly considered in developing the 2016 budget.

“It’s an infrastructure and a job budget. We have also set aside money for social intervention as the President explained.

“We are going to recruit teachers, we are going to get loans for market women, various projects to stimulate the economy and create jobs.

“In terms of the money, we know it’s tough but we have to find the money and we believe that we have both domestic and foreign borrowing which we will be relying on,” he said.

He assured Nigerians that the implementation of the 2016 budget would be different as there is a new budget planning and implementation strategy designed to ensure constant monitoring on a monthly basis.

Economic Diversification

2016 budgetPresident Buhari had said that Nigeria remains committed to diversification of the economy with focus on the non-oil sector and the Minister of Solid Minerals, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, said that this had been expected.

“We are already diversified in terms of GDP. Oil only accounts for about 12% of the GDP but it accounts for the bulk of the revenue and that is where the challenge is.

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“So we need to start driving the revenue in the direction of Agriculture, solid minerals, communications and other non-oil sectors so that we would have a much more realistic job creating, revenue generating economy,” he said.

Agriculture

The Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbe also had some cheering words for Nigerian farmers.

On the back of the President’s emphasis on diversification and the role expected of the Agricultural sector, Mr Ogbe promised “increased support in seed, training, extension services, post-harvest management and bigger overseas market for their produce.

“They will expect innovations in livestock, tree crops and the beautiful news is that the demand for Nigerian produce abroad has never been this high. That is what makes it marvellous.

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“The private sector and Nigerians are also responding amazingly to the call for Agriculture but what excites me more about this budget are two things – the job issue for young people and the return of teacher training colleges in the local governments.

“That is probably the biggest change that this government has announced and Nigerians will see the difference.,” he promised.

Job Creation

With a promise that the 2016 budget would focus on addressing youth unemployment and cater for the vulnerable, Channels Television 2016 budgetsought to know the plans of the Ministry of Labour and Productivity on the implementation of this key feature of the 2016 budget.

The Minister, Dr Chris Ngige, said, “What you should expect are jobs and more jobs. If you look at the budget it might not be clear to you what we have done. It’s an intervention budget for job creation.

“There are so many programmes that will run under them but all of them will end up being for job creation – giving employment.

“We will give employment that will be decent. For example, one of the programmes we are going to execute is the conversion of graduates into the teaching cadre. We’ll give them training after Youth Corps, 1-year post Youth Corps, 2-year post Youth Corps, that is the bar and we will start form there; get them into teaching.”

He also called on Nigerian youths to embrace technical skills in order to wriggle out joblessness.

2016 Budget: Forget About White Collar Jobs For Now – Ngige

2016 budgetNigeria’s Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige has called on Nigerian youths to embrace technical skills in order to wriggle out of joblessness.

He was speaking to Channels Television after President Muhammadu Buhari’s presentation of the 2016 budget at the National Assembly on Tuesday, December 22.

With a promise that the 2016 budget would focus on addressing youth unemployment and cater for the vulnerable, Channels Television sought to know the plans of the Ministry of Labour and Employment on the implementation of this key feature of the 2016 budget.

The Minister said, “What you should expect are jobs and more jobs. If you look at the budget it might not be clear to you what we have done. It’s an intervention budget for job creation.

“There are so many programmes that will run under them but all of them will end up being for job creation – giving employment.

“We will give employment that will be decent. For example, one of the programmes we are going to execute is the conversion of graduates into the teaching cadre. We’ll give them training after Youth Corps, 1-year post Youth Corps, 2-year post Youth Corps, that is the bar and we will start form there; get them into teaching.

“Whether you are an engineer or lawyer, we will convert you and use that as a transition job for the time being.

“We are also going to do skill acquisition. All our skill acquisition centre scattered all over the country are going to be raised into performing their roles.

“Our children should forget about white collar jobs for now. They should use their hands and learn how to lay tiles, make POP, do some carpentry work. These are jobs that are paying even in the western climes.

“Mr President has assured that Nigerians will smile. It’s a reflationary budget that you are seeing now.”