…As Emefiele calls for protection of nation’s reserves against external shocks
Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Washington DC
Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has disclosed that the $322,515,931.83 Abacha loot recovered from the Swiss government, and already domiciled with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will be channeled towards the Conditional Cash Transfer Programme (CCTP) of the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP).
This is even as the Governor of CBN, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has disclosed that the nation’s external reserves now stands at $47.93 billion.
The Minister and the CBN Governor spoke at a joint press briefing at the end of the 2018 International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Spring Meeting in Washington DC, United States.
The Conditional Cash Transfer is about paying N5,000 monthly to the poor and vulnerable persons in Nigeria. The money is paid bi-monthly at N10,000 for each beneficiary.
“The objective of the National Social Safety Nets Project for Nigeria is to provide access to targeted transfers to poor and vulnerable households under an expanded national social safety net system,” Adeosun said.
Adeosun, who led the Nigerian delegation to the 2018 IMF-World Bank Spring Meeting, also affirmed that the country’s positive growth outlook would be sustained.
She noted that the present growth outlook contrasted with the outlook in 2015, adding that inflation rate was slowing down while the foreign reserves were rising.
Expressing optimism on the Federal Government’s sustenance of the growth trajectory, the Minister, called for vigilance and focus for the country not to fall back into recession.
She said, “we are confident that if we diligently implement our economic plan, we will grow the economy. We have room to grow but other countries do not have rooms to grow.
“By 2019, the growth will be far more robust than the present level in 2018. We are therefore very optimistic in sustaining Nigeria’s economic growth. We are going to use this opportunity to grow our fiscal buffers, and particularly aggressively growing our revenue base.
“The administration has succeeded in building macroeconomic resilience for Nigeria, particularly revising the funding mix, rebuilding fiscal buffers, enhancing foreign exchange reserves and focusing on import substitution strategies.”
On the nation’s domestic debt, the Minister stated that the government would not aggressively grow the debt.