The Debt Management Office (DMO) has announced that Nigeria’s public debt as at end of 2020 was N32.92 trillion.
This was disclosed in a statement by the DMO on Tuesday, as it cited that many countries including the advanced countries also increased their level of borrowing as a result of COVID-19.
The DMO said the sum of the debt includes Debt Stock of the Federal and State Governments as well as the Federal Capital Territory.
It will be recalled that after Nigeria exited recession in 2017, the level of New Borrowing at the Federal Level as shown in the Annual Appropriation Acts, had been declining as part of the Government’s measures to moderate the rate of Growth in the Public Debt Stock in order to ensure debt sustainability.
New Borrowing to part-finance Budget Deficits had declined steadily from N2.36 Trillion in 2017 to: N2.01 trillion in 2018, N1.61 trillion in 2019 and N1.59 Trillion in the first 2020 Appropriation Act.
They added that the trend was reversed in 2020 due to the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic as New Borrowing in the revised 2020 Appropriation Act was N4.20 trillion.
DMO also revealed that apart from the New Domestic Borrowing of N2.3 trillion, the other New Borrowings were concessional Loans from the International Monetary Fund ($3.34 Billion) and other multilateral and bilateral lenders, which was used to partly finance the 2020 budget.
“Total Public Debt to Gross Domestic Product as at December 31, 2020 was 21.61per cent which is within Nigeria’s new Limit of 40per cent.
“The various initiatives of Government to increase revenues such as the Strategic Revenue Growth Initiative and the Finance Act, 2020, should help shore up Government’s revenue and reduce the Debt Service to Revenue Ratio,” it added.