Nigeria’s total public debt doubled within a period of one year hitting N87.4 trillion in the second quarter of 2023, a BusinessDay analysis has shown.
According to the latest data of the Debt Management Office (DMO), the country’s debt rose by 102 percent to N87.4 trillion, the highest in at least 11 years from N42.8 trillion in Q2 last year. The percent increase is higher than 20.6 percent increase for the previous year.
It also increased on a quarter on quarter basis, by 75.3 percent to N49.9 trillion.
“The major addition to the public debt stock was the inclusion of the N22.7 trillion securitised FGN’s Ways and Means Advances,” DMO said in a statement.
The Ways and Means Advances is a loan facility through which the CBN finances the shortfalls in the government’s budget.
Nigeria’s total public debt stock comprises total domestic and external debts of the Federal Government of Nigeria, the thirty-six states, and the Federal Capital Territory.
The statement noted that other additions to the debt stock were new borrowings by the Federal Government and the sub-nationals from local and external sources.
“The reforms already introduced by the present administration and those that may emerge from the recommendations of the Fiscal Reform and Tax Policies Committee are expected to impact debt strategy and improve debt sustainability,” it said.
The DMO had earlier projected that the country’s public debt burden may hit N77 trillion following the National Assembly’s approval of the request by former President Muhammadu Buhari to restructure the CBN’s ways and means advances.