The Debt Management Office on Monday released the debt profile of the country as at March 31st 2017 and the numbers do not make for good reading. Every segment of the country’s debt profile has recorded significant increases over a 2-year period, with increases ranging from 40% and 75%. The resultant effect is that the overall debt profile of the country has increased from the N17.36 trillion recorded at the end of December 2016 to N19.16 trillion.
More detailed analysis show that the country’s external debt for the federal and state governments) rose from $9.46 billion to $13.81 billion, representing a 46% increase while the domestic debt component rose by 40.71% to hit N8.51 trillion.
States were responsible for the highest proportional increase in debt accumulated over this period as the domestic component of their debts rose 75.2% to N2.96 trillion. This is in spite of the Paris Club funds released to them as well as other bailout funds.
Several international analysts have voiced their concerns over what they label an ‘unsustainable debt profile’. According to the World Bank, almost a quarter of the country’s GDP will be used to service debts, thus painting a bleak future for the country. Other concerns surround the quality and utilization of these debts which could either make them worthwhile or render them an additional burden to a weighed-down citizenry.