ACTING FINANCE MINISTER SAYS NIGERIA DOESN’T HAVE DEBT PROBLEM

ACTING FINANCE MINISTER SAYS NIGERIA DOESN’T HAVE DEBT PROBLEM

The Acting Minister of Finance, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, says Nigeria does not have debt problem because the country’s debt ratio to GDP is below the three per cent threshold set by the Fiscal Reasonability Act.

She noted that the main challenge confronting the nation is revenue problem, saying that the nation lacks the revenue to pay salaries and to also meet the recurrent and capital expenditures.

She added that the national debt appears high because the country is currently facing a low revenue challenge.

Ahmed said this on Friday during a visit to the Nigeria Customs Service Headquarters in Abuja.

The minister also stressed the importance of improving revenue generation to enable Nigeria to achieve its economic objectives.

She said, “People have raised concerns about our debt profile, but we do not have a debt problem.

“Our debt ratio to GDP is still below three per cent, which is the threshold set by the Fiscal Reasonability Act.

“What we have is a revenue problem. We don’t have revenue to pay salaries and to meet the recurrent as well as the capital expenditure.”

Ahmed said the functions of the NCS in regard to revenue generation were germane to the success of the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

According to the minister, it is for this reason that the NCS is constantly being pushed to improve revenue collections.

Ahmed said government had considered raising Value Added Tax and Excise Duty as well as including more items on the Excise Duty list.

She said however that government had decided to hold on to the idea until the economic condition in the country improved.

(NAN)

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