Nigeria’s Public Debt Now Worth $84.6 Billion

By Bashir Olanrewaju

Nigeria’s total public debt as at the end of September stood at 84.6 billion dollars, with domestic accounting for 62 percent of the total, according to the Debt Management Office.

Total external debt was at $31.9 billion, comprising entirely of federal government borrowing.

The federal government’s share of domestic debt of 52.5 trillion naira is 49.18 percent, with 13 percent for the states and the Federal Capital Territory, according to a statement posted on Thursday on the DMO website.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s government is relying increasingly on borrowing to fill a revenue gap caused by declining oil income, made worse by the coronavirus pandemic that slashed global demand for the country’s main export.

The domestic debt has been incurred largely through the sale of bonds and treasury bills, while the foreign debt came through eurbond sales and lending from multilateral institutions.

The government plans to borrow more than 5 trillion naira this year to cover expected revenue deficit, according to the 2021 budget signed into law on New Year’s Eve.