IMF says Nigeria’s debt has increased
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IMF says Nigeria’s debt has increased

- IMF says Nigeria’s debt to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio at 28% is still below average in the sub-Saharan Africa and Africa region

- Amine Mati, the IMF senior resident representative and mission chief for Nigeria, says the federal government needs to increase its drive to create more new jobs

- The IMF chief lists Angola, South Africa and Nigeria as the three largest countries that are driving Sub Saharan growth

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that Nigeria’s debt to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio at 28% has increased but is still below average in the sub-Saharan Africa and Africa region.

Daily Trust reports that Amine Mati, the IMF senior resident representative and mission chief for Nigeria, made the disclosure in Lagos on Wednesday, November 27, during a public presentation.

He urged the federal government to increase its drive to create more new jobs and revamp its fiscal consolidation, noting that the country’s GDP was low.

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“Nigeria debt has increased but the level is way below the average for the region. Even if we include the CBN overdraft and others we are talking about debt to GDP ratio that doesn’t go beyond 27 to 28 per cent to GDP and that is including AMCON overdrafts etcetera,” Mati said.

“For resource-intensive countries and the non-resource intensive countries, one thing that is common is that when there is trade shock, they had to react. So, you lose revenues, debt go up.”

The IMF chief listed Angola, South Africa and Nigeria as the three largest countries that are driving Sub Saharan growth.

He said Angola has a negative growth; South Africa has a growth below one per cent and Nigeria is growing between two and 2.5 per cent which is still on the negative per capita growth.

“Nigeria is still on 2.3 per cent for 2019 but for 2020 we project a growth of 2.5 per cent, so it is still not growing as fast as the others for a variety of reasons including some of the structural reforms and others but it is picking up,” Mati said.

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He said African countries need to priorities job creation adding that these could be achieved through structural reforms and whatever reforms are being pursued.”

Meanwhile, the Debt Management Office (DMO) says as, at June 30, Nigeria owes N25.7 trillion in debt both domestically and externally.

The DMO said this in its ‘Total Public Debt Portfolio’ obtained from its website on Wednesday, October 15 in Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that as at December 31, 2018, Nigeria’s total debt stock stood at N24.38 trillion.

Legit.ng gathers that the present figure shows an increase in debt stock of N1.32 trillion.

The DMO said that the current total debt stock comprised both the federal government debt, that of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

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