• Sunday, July 14, 2024
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Nigeria widens budget deficit to N3trn after oil rout


Nigeria widened this year’s budget deficit forecast by 36 percent after oil prices dropped below the $38 per barrel benchmark estimate set by Africa’s top producer.

The gap will increase to 3 trillion naira ($15.1 billion) from 2.2 trillion naira, or 3 percent of gross domestic product, and will remain within the “comfort zone for the international rating agencies,” Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun said in an e-mailed statement on Thursday. The revised budget is seen aiding the effort to meet a 4.2 percent economic growth target this year, she said.

Nigeria derives almost all export earnings from oil and Africa’s largest economy will probably see growth fall to 3.2 percent last year, the slowest pace since 1999, according to a Bloomberg survey of economists.
Nigeria won’t reduce infrastructure investments because of the drop in crude prices, Adeosun said.