The Debt Management Office has announced that Nigeria’s total public debt stock increased to N46.25tn or $103.11bn in the fourth quarter of 2022.
As of September 2022, Nigeria’s debt figure was N44.06tn. The DMO said the new figure consists of the domestic and external total debt stocks of the Federal Government and the sub-national governments (36 state governments and the Federal Capital Territory).
The comparative figure of public debt as of December 31, 2021, was N39.56tn or $95.77bn. This means that the country’s debt increased by N6.69trn or $7.34bn within one year.
The DMO said new borrowings by the FGN and sub-national governments, primarily to fund budget deficits and execute projects and the issuance of promissory notes to settle some liabilities also contributed to the growth in the debt stock.
In a debt profile breakdown, the commercial hub of the nation, Lagos, tops the states with the highest debt profile recording a total of N807.21 billion in Q4 2022, while Delta came in second with N304.25 billion and Ogun with N270.45 billion.
Jigawa recorded the lowest debt with N43.95 billion followed by Kebbi and Katsina with N61.31 billion and N62.37 billion respectively.
The agency said in a statement;
“As of December 31, 2022, the total public debt stock was N46.25tn or $103.11bn. In terms of composition, total domestic debt stock was N27.55tn ($61.42bn) while total external debt stock was N18.70tn ($41.69bn).
“Amongst the reasons for the increase in the total public debt stock were new borrowings by the FGN and sub-national governments, primarily to fund budget deficits and execute projects. The issuance of promissory notes by the FGN to settle some liabilities also contributed to the growth in the debt stock.
“On-going efforts by the Government to increase revenues from oil and non-oil sources through initiatives such as the Finance Acts and the Strategic Revenue Mobilization initiative are expected to support debt sustainability.
“The total public debt to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio for December 31, 2022, was 23.20 per cent and indicates a slight increase from the figure for December 31, 2022, at 22.47 per cent.
“The ratio of 23.20 per cent is within the 40 per cent limit self-imposed by Nigeria, the 55 per cent limit recommended by the World Bank/International Monetary Fund, and, the 70 per cent limit recommended by the Economic Community of West African States.”