Jonathan Presents N4.6 Trillion Budget Estimate For 2014
Abuja - On Thursday, Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan presented the budget estimate for the 2014 fiscal year to the National Assembly.
Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala acted on behalf of the President.
The presentation was devoid of the usual pomp of annual budget events. Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala was only allowed by the two chambers to lay the budgets without a speech.
It was the first time since the return of democracy in 1999 that a minister would present the budget on behalf of the president.
The 2014 budget of N4.6 trillion, is a decline in comparison with the N4.7 trillion of 2013.
According to the budget estimate, the Federal Government is to spend N1.1 trillion for capital expenditure, while N3.7 trillion is expected to come from the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
The three key figures represent a reduction from the past two years. For 2013, total spending stood at N4.9 trillion, while the government said it had succeeded lowering recurrent spending from 71.47 per cent in 2012 to 68.7 per cent in 2013.
Capital expenditure also rose from 28.53 per cent in 2012 to 31.3 per cent in 2013.
The figures announced by the finance minister show the government was again preparing to spend more on wages, running, and personnel cost. That quota has risen from 68.7 percent in 2013 to 72 percent in 2014.
Later, speaking to journalists, Okonjo-Iweala said the aggregate expenditure of N4.6 trillion excluded the Subsidy Reinvestment Expenditure Programme (SURE-P).
The minister said the 2014 national budget will focus on job creation and inclusive growth.
"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 our policies that would support manufacturing because jobs would be created there," she said.
"Industries will also be created in solid minerals. All these support will continue to be unleashed. Job creation is the key to really solving the problems of the Nigerian economy."