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COVID-19: Nigeria cuts revenue targets in anticipation of economic shock

FG, in response to the economic woes caused by COVID-19, has announced that it has cut its revenue target from privatisation by 50%.

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2020 budget, Don’t over heat bleak economic outlook – Finance Minister, COVID-19: Nigeria cuts revenue targets in anticipation of economic shock, State Governments: Another cycle of non-payment of salaries to begin soon

The Nigerian Government, in response to the economic woes caused by COVID-19, has announced that it has cut its revenue target from privatisation by 50%.

The Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, disclosed this after a meeting held between the executive arm of government and the leadership of the National Assembly to review the country’s 2020 budget and Medium Term Expenditure Framework in relation to present economic reality.

Ahmed confirmed that the budget oil benchmark has now been reviewed downwards from $57 to $30 per barrel, adding that the expected revenue generation from the Nigeria Customs Service has also been reviewed downwards from N1.5 trillion to N943 billion.

The reductions in targets were carried out in anticipation to reduction in trade volumes for a worst-case scenario as well as to protect the Nigeria economy from undue economic pressure as a result of the outbreak.

The minister added that privatisation proceeds would be cut by 50% based on the adverse economic outlook on sales of the Independent Power Projects and other assets.

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[READ MORE: States may owe salaries in coming months, as Governor laments fiscal woes)

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Public Enterprises had said in February that it planned to generate a total net revenue of N266.8 billion from the sale of public assets to support the implementation of the 2020 budget.

Ex-PPMC Boss dies of COVID-19

Ahmed said, “The Federal Government is working on Fiscal Stimulus Measures to provide fiscal relief for taxpayers and key economic sectors. We will incentivise employers to retain and recruit staff during the economic downturn.

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“We will stimulate investment in critical infrastructure; review non-essential tax waivers to optimise revenues, and complement monetary and trade interventions to respond to the crisis.” 

According to Ahmed, the Federal Government in combatting the Wuhan virus would release N6.5 billion in two tranches (N1.5 billion and N5 billion) to the National Centre for Disease Control as intervention to assist in the fight against the spread of the COVID-19 disease in Nigeria. She added that the Lagos State Government also would receive financial support of N10 billion from the Federal Government to combat coronavirus spread in the state.

However, the minister stated that, “Prior to COVID-19 and oil price decline, the Nigerian economy was already fragile and vulnerable while she informed the lawmakers that Nigeria had received a grant of $18.2m from Japan for the strengthening seven NCDC centers across the country. 

“Increasing pressure on the naira and foreign reserves as the crude oil sales receipts decline and the country’s macro-economic outlook worsens.”

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Economy & Politics

Uganda Elections: Museveni re-elected for 6th term with 58.6% of the votes

Uganda’s President Museveni has won a 6th term in office as the opposition alleges wide-scale rigging.

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The President of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni, has been re-elected as President, gathering 5.85 million votes compared to 3.48 million votes by main opposition leader, Robert Kyagulanyi, a.k.a Bobi Wine.

According to Reuters, this victory represents 58.6% of the vote cast while Bobi Wine got 34.8%

Bobi Wine announced that the election results show this is the most fraudulent election in the history of Uganda and urged his followers to reject the result.

What you should know

  • Yoweri Museveni, aged 76, has been President of the East African nation since 1986.
  • Bobi Wine claimed via his official Twitter handle that military men jumped over his fence and took control of his home yesterday.

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Coronavirus

Combined Vaccine Manufacturing capacity to hit 6.8 billion doses in 2021

COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing capacity is expected to hit 6.8 billion doses in 2021.

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Covid-19: First world nations oppose waiving intellectual rights for vaccine development

Meristem Group disclosed that the combined effort in manufacturing COVID-19 vaccines for global use is expected to yield about 6.8 billion doses in 2021.

This was revealed in the Annual Outlook 2021 report presented by Meristem Group, titled Bracing for a different future.”

According to the report, the existing manufacturing capacity will only be sufficient enough to immunize about 44% of the global population, which would create obvious vaccination gap and make the pandemic last longer than necessary.

The report states,

  • The cold temperature requirements for vaccine storage pose major logistics concern particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa and other low-income countries. WHO estimates that about 50% of vaccines are wasted every year, largely due to a lack of temperature control.”

According to the report, the estimated 6.8billion doses are expected to be collaboratively manufactured as follows:  CanSino – 0.2billion, AstraZeneca – 3.0 billion, Gamaleya – 0.3billion, Moderna – 0.4billion, Pfizer-BioNtech – 1.3billion, SinoPharm – 1billion, and SinoVac – 0.6billion.

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What you should know

  • The global population as of 2020 is 7.8billion and 70% is required to achieve herd immunity (otherwise called herd protection)
  • Herd Immunity or herd protection is achieved when you have most of the population immunized against an infectious disease.
  • 2 doses of the vaccines are required for each person for immunity.
  • It is expected that between 11 and 15 billion doses would be required to achieve the desired herd immunity, globally.
  • From all indications, herd immunity may not be achieved until mid or late 2022, with the subsisting 100% vaccine production capacity utilization in 2021 – with neither production nor distribution losses.
  • To achieve regulatory approval, a vaccine must undergo a three-stage clinical development process after the exploratory and pre-clinical stages and the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sets a phase 3 efficacy benchmark of 50%.

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Coronavirus

Covid-19: Global deaths surpass 2 million

Global casualty record for the Covid-19 pandemic surpassed 2 million deaths on Friday.

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Nigeria blows past 40,000 COVID-19 cases

The Global casualty record for the Covid-19 pandemic surpassed 2 million deaths on Friday, with the United States accounting for 1 in every 5 deaths, as it has recorded over 386,000 casualties so far.

This was disclosed in a report by Reuters in its Covid-19 tally reported on Friday evening.

After the United States, Brazil, Mexico, India and the U.K contribute nearly 50% of the combined casualties.

The report also disclosed that an average of 11,900 casualties are recorded per day in year 2021, despite the fact that it took 9 months for the world to record 1 million casualties.

United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, said the 2 million death count was “a heart-wrenching milestone.”

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  • “Behind this staggering number are names and faces: the smile now only a memory, the seat forever empty at the dinner table, the room that echoes with the silence of a loved one,” he added.

The WHO warned that 2021 could be tougher due to the nature of new variants which transmit the disease faster.

  • “We are going into a second year of this. It could even be tougher given the transmission dynamics and some of the issues that we are seeing,” WHO Chief, Mike Ryan, said.

Analysts expect the global death toll to surpass 3 million by April 2021.

What you should know 

  • Nairametrics reported that the total number of covid-19 cases in Nigeria had surpassed the 100,000 mark on Sunday 10th January 2021, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.
  • The African Union stated that it secured 270 million Covid-19 vaccine doses for the continent from drug manufacturers to supplement the COVAX programme, a step towards the commencement of the complex task of vaccinating over 1.2 billion people with limited financial resources.
  • The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control on Friday 15th January 2021, announced that 1,867 new cases of the covid-19 virus were recorded across 24 states in the country. This represents the highest number of cases recorded in a single day.

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