The Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, says the federal government is being cautious as it plans to invest the over six trillion Naira pension funds.
The Minister said this when she appeared before the House of Representatives as part of its ongoing sectoral debate on diversification of the Nigerian economy.
“A lot has been said about the pension money. We have six trillion and people treat it as if it’s just available for the taking. This is people’s future savings, so we have to be very cautious about how we release pension money into investment.
“The first thing we have to do is to relax the rules cautiously and with many safeguards so we don’t lose pensioners’ money and cause a problem in the future.
“Definitely we are going to put things in place such as the infrastructure bond that we are releasing that will encourage pension funds to invest but invest safely,” she said.
The Minister also said that the federal government has set up a committee to look into the financial impact of waivers that have been given by the government.
“Over the last five years we have given away one trillion Naira in waivers. It is quite significant and we believe that it needs to be looked at.
“Import duty waivers alone is 503 billion, VAT waivers is 227 billion. We are now going to look at what the cost benefits of these waivers are, what are the jobs that they have created.
“What we found is that they have been accused in some cases. We found that methods used to manage them are manual and therefore there is a lot of manipulation which we intend to address.”