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Economy & Politics

Lagos State House of Assembly approves the sum of N1.163 trillion for 2021 budget

Lagos State House of Assembly has upwardly reviewed and approved the sum of N1.163 trillion as the budgetary allocations for 2021.

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Lagos Rail Mass Transit, Lagos State House of Assembly, Lagos 2021 Appropriation Bill scales through second reading

The Lagos State House of Assembly has approved the sum of N1.163 trillion today, as the total budgetary allocation for 2021.

The recent development indicates an increase of N8.5 billion from the amount originally presented for consideration to the house, according to a verified tweet by the Lagos State House of Assembly, seen by Nairametrics.

READ: Lagos Assembly passes bill to establish Lottery and Gaming Authority

Recall that Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo Olu, on November 2020, presented the state budget tagged “Budget of Rekindling Hope,” worth N1.155 trillion, to the State House of Assembly. The budget earmarked the sums of N703.23 billion for capital expenditure and N451.75 billion for recurrent expenditure.

Sequel to the presentation, a plenary session was held today 29th of December, 2020 and the appropriation bill discussed. After much deliberation, the sum of N1.163 trillion was approved for the 2021 budget.

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As at the time of filing this report, Nairametrics is yet to ascertain the reason for the increase in the statutory allocation.

READ: Lagos Assembly passes Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Bill into law

Plenary proceedings

  • The House in its plenary session today, considered the 2021 Appropriation Bill forwarded by the Governor. The motion to consider the bill was moved by Honourable G.O Yishawu.
  • After much deliberations and comments on the presentations of the reports, Honourable Adedamola Kasumu, moved a motion that the reports be adopted by the resolutions of the House. The motion was seconded by Honourable Lukmon Olumoh.
  • Majority leader of the House, Honourable Agunbiade S.O.B, gave a summary of what transpired in the committee of Supply as the House reverts back to plenary.
  • Finally, the House approved a budget size of N1, 163,522,460,717.

READ: Plateau Governor assents 2021 Appropriation Bill worth N147.6 billion

What this means

The recent development is a big boost to expediting the implementation of the 2021 budget, especially as the state government strives to rebuild the economy from the ruins of the COVID-19 pandemic and EndSARS protests that negatively impacted the state.

With the legislative passage, what remains for the Budget to take its full course is the executive assent which is the next and final stage.

READ: Nigeria Health Infrastructure Development Bank Bill scales second reading at House plenary

What you should know about the appropriation bill

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  • The 2021 budget is centred on advancing the T.H.E.M.E.S agenda of the State Government and expected to rekindle hope in the state on the implementation of its content.

READ: Lagos Govt seals Queens Park Event Centre, Oniru for contravening COVID-19 protocol

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Chidi Emenike is a graduate of economics, a Young African Leadership Initiative Fellow and an Investment Foundations certificate holder. He worked as a graduate Teaching Assistant in the Federal College of Education Kano and is also a trained National Peer Group Educator on Financial Inclusion

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Economy & Politics

MPC recommends CBN increase lending to government via Ways and Means

The MPC urged the CBN to increase its lending to the government as it believes it will help reflate the economy from its recession.

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CBN Bans Maize Importation

The Monetary Policy Committee has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria to increase its lending to the government via Ways and Means as it believes it will help reflate the economy from its recession.

This is contained in a recent communique from the first Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting concluded on Tuesday, 26th January 2021.

According to the report, the committee considered the broad-based global stimulus packages introduced by the apex banks of different countries to support their economic recovery in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Some of the stimulus packages noted by the MPC include; expanded credit lines, asset purchase programme, corporate bond purchase, additional funding facilities for the financial system, commercial paper purchases, special central bank lending, and increase in Ways and Means limits.

What you need to know

  • Recall that Nairametrics reported that the Federal government borrowed a total of N2.8 trillion in via Ways and Means from the CBN in 2020 due to the FG’s failure to meet its revenue targets as a result of the impact of the crash in global oil prices and the covid-19 pandemic.
  • However, the MPC noted the large stimulus packages deployed by other countries to quicken their growth recovery. Notably, the report stated that Japan provided stimulus packages valued at 66% of its 2019 GDP, UK (45.04%), USA (28.4%), Brazil (27.6%), South Africa (12.6%).
  • Also, China deployed 11.5% of its GDP, India (10%), Russia (7.1%) as against Nigeria’s 4%.
  • It is worth noting, that the Ways and Means financing was brought to public view in 2016 by the former CBN Governor, Lamido Sanusi after he accused the government of contravening the CBN Act by borrowing more than the required 5% of the prior year revenue.
  • While in 2020, the government borrowed 62.2% of its 2019 revenues of N4.5 trillion.
  • Also, recall that the budget deficit of N5.6 trillion from the total N13.58 trillion signed by the president is expected to be mainly financed by domestic and foreign borrowings, despite debt stock hitting N32.2 trillion as of September 2020.

The MPC, therefore, urged the Apex Bank to further expand its current stimulus packages to support the fiscal interventions to reflate and boost recovery in the economy.

Specta

In order to improve revenue, the MPC also called on the government to take advantage of the take-off of the African Continental Free trade Area (AfCFTA), as it believes it could boost domestic production and generate sizeable revenues for the government.

Bottom line

With the decline in government revenue, due to the crash in oil price and disruption caused by the Covid-19, it is practically impossible for the government to fund its expenditure for the year without borrowings. Hence the need for the CBN’s support loans.

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Economy & Politics

Covid-19: No more lockdown, CBN advises government

Despite rising Covid-19 cases, the CBN MPC encourages government to avoid locking down the economy again.

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Banks' stakeholders express 4 main concerns bothering the sector right now, CBN, MARKET UPDATE: CBN’s historic agriculture lending; Is it yielding the desired results? 

The Central Bank of Nigeria encouraged the Federal Government of Nigeria to avoid locking down the economy again as the second wave of Covid-19 causes an increase in confirmed cases and more deaths.

The apex bank cited the negative impact of another lockdown on the economy as a major concern suggesting that sustaining the tepid economic recovery was perhaps a higher priority than curtailing the fast-spreading variant of the second wave virus via another lockdown.

The remarks were contained in the monetary policy communique read out by the central bank governor Godwin Emefiele following the end of the bank’s monetary policy committee meeting, the first for the year.

“While expressing understanding of the public health dilemma of the recent spike in infections, MPC encouraged Government not to consider a wholesome lockdown of the economy so as not to reverse the current gains of the stimulus earlier provided in 2020.” Emefiele

As of  January 26, 2020, Nigeria had a total number of Covid-19 cases of about 124, 299, and 1,522 deaths as the second wave continue to spread rapidly across the country. Since December 1st, Nigeria’s positive cases have risen by about 56, 742 cases (83% ) from about 67,557 on the last day of November 2021.

Specta

However, the central bank’s recommendations are hinged on the precarious state of the economy which is highlighted throughout a rather sobering MPC communique. In one statement the apex bank admitted that the rise in covid-19 cases was dragging economic recovery backward as more Nigerians become wary of socializing but the spate of economic recovery cannot be jeopardized.

According to the CBN “the outlook for the recovery, however, appears to be dampened by the second wave of the pandemic considering its intensity” yet it still maintained that the previous lockdown was the trigger for another recession.

“In the Committee’s consideration, it noted that the COVID-19 pandemic and the necessary measures put in place by the Government to forestall its public health impact, such as the lockdown and other associated restrictions, contributed to the Nigerian economy going into recession, much like almost every other country in the world.”

CBN Paints a gloomy picture of the economic recovery

The members of the monetary policy committee also detailed challenges to economic recovery being experienced by the country such as higher inflationary rates, weak PMI numbers, and an increase in non-performing loan ratios of commercial banks.

On increase in non-performing loans

“The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), however, noted the marginal increase in the Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) ratio which rose to 6.01 percent at end-December 2020 from 5.88 percent at end-November 2020 and above the prudential maximum threshold of 5.0 percent. While noting that this development is not unexpected under the prevailing circumstances, it urged the Bank to strengthen its macroprudential framework to bring NPLs below the prescribed benchmark.”

On PMI numbers

The MPC noted with concern the continuing sluggish recovery in the Manufacturing and Non-Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’
Indices (PMIs), which remained below the 50-index point benchmark in December 2020, at 49.6 and 45.7 index points, respectively, compared with 50.2 and 47.6 index points during the previous month. This weak performance was attributed to the resurgence of the pandemic, foreign exchange pressures, increased costs of production, general increase in prices and decline in economic activities.

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On Inflation

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This uptick was attributed to the increase in both the food and core components of inflation, which rose to 19.56 and 11.37 percent in December 2020, respectively, from 18.30 and 11.01 percent in November 2020. This continued upsurge in food inflation was attributed to the logistical bottlenecks, spurred by the increasing security challenges in many parts of the country, which disrupted food production and supply to the market. Other factors driving the core inflation, include the recent deregulation of the downstream sector of the oil industry, which led to hikes in the price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) and the upward adjustment in electricity tariff.

What this means

As the economy slowly recovers from the Covid-19 induced lockdown, several of our major indicators still show there is trouble ahead. These 3 indicators are some of the most telling.

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  • Higher non-performing loans, though expected are symptomatic of what businesses are currently going through as they strive to improve their balance sheet. With weaker sales and piling inventory most businesses will continue to struggle to meet up with their debt obligations increasing the number of non-performing loans in the country.
  • The Purchasing Managers Index is a critical bellwether for predicting when Nigeria gets out of the recession. As a compilation of how businesses are fairing, an index below 50 suggests we are far from a V-shaped recovery and could face a longer wait to get out of the current recession.
  • Nigeria’s galloping inflation rate and economic contraction have created stagflation that puts the economy in a rather precarious situation. Much of the causative factors for the rising inflation are outside of the control of the CBN suggesting a higher inflation rate could persist in the coming months.
  • The CBN indicates we could get out of higher inflation rates later this year, but not before it hit its peak as we expect the cost of goods and services to keep rising.

CBN Outlook

Despite the gloomy picture, the CBN expects the economy to recover this year provided the country continues with its economic stimulus.

Available data and forecasts for key macroeconomic variables for the Nigerian economy suggest further improvement in output
growth in the first quarter of 2021. This would be supported by the coordinated and sustained interventions of the monetary and fiscal authorities, including the broad-based stimulus and liquidity injections.

But to ensure its optimistic outlook for the economy comes through, the CBN is recommending that more efforts should be geared towards acquiring and distributing vaccines rather than shutting down the economy.

“Members thus agreed that the Committee’s current priority remains to quicken the pace of the recovery through sustained and targeted spending by the fiscal authority supported by the Bank’s interventions. In this light, it was thought necessary to increase collaboration with the fiscal authority by providing complementary spending to finance productive ventures in a bid to improve aggregate supply and reduce prices. This is in addition to effectively collaborating with the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 through the existing private sector Coalition against COVID-19 (CACOVID) to procure and distribute vaccines to fast-track the pick-up of business activities and economic recovery.”

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Coronavirus

IMF optimistic about global economy but warns new Covid variants could affect recovery

IMF is quite optimistic about the fortune of the global economy but expressed fear that the new Covid variant could derail economic recovery.

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IMF

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has expressed optimism about the global economy but warns that the new COVID 19 variant could affect the global economic growth, according to its latest World Economic Outlook.

According to the report, “the institution now expects the global economy to grow 5.5% this year — a 0.3 percentage point increase from October’s forecasts. It sees global GDP (gross domestic product) expanding by 4.2% in 2022”.

According to its Chief Economist, Gita Gopinath:

  • “Much now depends on the outcome of this race between a mutating virus and vaccines to end the pandemic, and on the ability of policies to provide effective support until that happens.
  • “There remains tremendous uncertainty and prospects vary greatly across countries.
  • China returned to its pre-pandemic projected level in the fourth quarter of 2020, ahead of all large economies. The United States is projected to surpass its pre-Covid levels this year, well ahead of the euro area.
  • “Policy actions should ensure effective support until the recovery is firmly underway, with an emphasis on advancing key imperatives of raising potential output, ensuring participatory growth that benefits all, and accelerating the transition to lower carbon dependence.”

What you should know

  • There has been a surge in the number of reported cases of the new variant Covid-19 infections and deaths over the past few months.
  • The new variant has been described as being more infectious and potentially deadlier than the original strain.
  • The IMF had cut its GDP forecasts for the euro zone this year by 1%.
  • It is being projected that the 19-member region, which has been severely hit by the pandemic, would grow by 4.2% this year.
  • Germany, France, Italy and Spain — the four largest economies in the euro zone — also saw their growth expectations cut for 2021.
  • Economic activity in the region slowed in the final quarter of 2020 and this is expected to continue into the first part of 2021. The IMF does not expect the euro area economy to return to end-of-2019 levels before the end of 2022.
  • IMF revised its GDP forecast upward by 2% points on the back of a strong momentum in the second part of 2020 and additional fiscal support, with GDP expected to grow to 5.1% this year.

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