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Thursday, December 19, 2013

Okonjo-Iweala Presents N4.6 Trillion 2014 Budget To NASS


The Federal Government has proposed a budget estimate of N4.6 Trillion for the 2014 fiscal year, one billion less than the 2013 figure.
The budget, which was laid before the two chambers of the National Assembly by the Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, also estimates that N268.4 billion will be spent on the Subsidy Re-Investment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P).
According to the minister, the budget supports the federal government’s drive to diversify the economy and create jobs.
The National Assembly had deferred the presentation of the budget on a number of times which made President Goodluck Jonathan to direct the Finance Minister to submit the budget proposal to the National Assembly.
The aggregate expenditure for the budget is put at N4.642 trillion. This excludes the Subsidy Re-Investment and Empowerment Programme, which is put at N268.37 billion for the Federal Government.
The expected revenue is N3.73 trillion. The capital budget is N1.1 trillion, which is about 27 percent of the budget and the recurrent is about 72 percent.
The fiscal deficit is 1.9 percent of GDP and the oil benchmark is 77.5 dollar per barrel. The minister explained the reduction in the figure budget proposal from 2013.
The law makers are expected to begin work on the budget proposal, but that can only take place next year following the adjournment of legislative proceedings till January 14, 2014.
She said, “This budget is the budget for job creation and inclusive growth; meaning that its a budget which will continue the president’s transformation agenda for several sectors of the economy.
“The budget is going to support the push in agriculture; it will kick-start the housing sector where we can create more jobs; it is designed to promote our policies that would support manufacturing because jobs would be created there.
“Industries will also be created in solid minerals. All these support will continued to be unleashed.  Job creation is the key to really solving the problems of the Nigerian economy.”
The former World Bank chief laid the document before the senators during their plenary, presided over by Senate President David Mark.
Mark said the action was in conformity with section 81 of the 1999 Constitution as amended,  which empowered the President to communicate the budget to the National Assembly.
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