The Federal Government of Nigeria has put forth a proposed budget of N26.01 trillion for the year 2024. This budget is predicated on an oil price benchmark of $73.96 and an interest rate of 21 per cent.
At the conclusion of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on Monday in Abuja, Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, Atiku Bagudu, shared this information with State House correspondents. He stated that the budget would be presented to the National Assembly before the year’s end, as President Bola Tinubu is actively engaging with the legislative arm to secure their support.
The budget’s primary objective is to build upon the economic reforms initiated by the current administration, which are aimed at enhancing the living standards of Nigerians and attracting investors. Bagudu further explained that the budget’s assumptions hinge on various diplomatic efforts by the president and other government officials, which are expected to enhance inflow and strengthen the exchange rate.
In addition to this budget update, Mr. Dave Umahi, the Minister of Works, disclosed that the FEC approved the use of concrete for road projects across the nation, including both ongoing and new projects, depending on the degree of completion. The move to utilise concrete is driven by efforts to control inflation and manage project variations.
Umahi elaborated, “FEC approved that concept that most of the ongoing projects should be designed on concrete pavements depending on the level of completion, and if you’re doing asphalt, there are also conditions for that.”
Furthermore, FEC gave the green light to the coastal road project spanning from Lagos to Port Harcourt to Calabar. Phase 2 of the project will extend from S4, diverting from this route to Sokoto and Ogoja. This project is set to follow the Engineering-Procurement-Construction-Financing model.
The FEC also approved the concession of eight roads initiated during the previous administration, with financial closure expected to be reached in November. Umahi noted that any state interested in taking over road projects in their respective regions will receive 24-hour approval, provided they meet specific conditions.
These conditions include adherence to the Federal Ministry of Works’ standards and a commitment to the tolling system for investment recovery. Finally, the FEC gave the green light to road projects overseen and funded by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) throughout the country.