FEC approves 2019 budget for presentation to NASS

The Federal Executive Council, presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, on Friday approved the proposals for the 2019 budget.

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo-Udoma, disclosed this to State House Correspondents in Abuja.

A special session of FEC on the budget ended a few minutes ago.

Udo-Udoma stated that the next stage was to liaise with the National Assembly to pick a date for the presentation of the estimates by Buhari.

The Federal Government is proposing N8.6trn as the budget for next year.

Udoma, who briefed State House correspondents after the extraordinary FEC, said the proposals would be sent to the National Assembly.

“It will be presented to the National Assembly; we will have to consult them in terms of the date of that presentation.

“The budget is the President’s budget; it is the President that presents it; I would be usurping his authority if I gave further details.

“We are hoping to be in touch with the National Assembly as soon as possible.

“They have to agree to the date they will receive the budget. We are going to be in touch with them immediately; but the budget is ready.

“If I speculate on that, I will be encroaching on the role of the National Assembly,’’ he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that FEC had, on October 4, approved the 2019/2021 Medium Term Expenditure Framework  and Fiscal Strategy Paper.

Udoma had said that the MTEF and FSP that were approved were designed to translate the strategic development objectives of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan into a realistic and implementable budget framework for the medium term.

The minister had said that the MTEF projected a proposed budget of N8.73tn for the 2019 fiscal year, adding that the figure was about N400bn less than the 2018 budget of N9.12trn.

NAN reports that Udoma had, in November, announced that the Federal Government was considering a leaner 2019 budget of N8.6trn, which is leaner than the N9.1trn approved by lawmakers for 2018.

Addressing a consultative forum on the medium term expenditure framework and fiscal strategy paper 2019-2021, the Minister said the decision was due to reduced government revenue projection for the year.

He also said government planned to cut down the level of borrowing from N1.6trn in 2018 to N1.5trn in 2019, while the deficit component would be reduced from N1.9trn in 2018 to N1.6trn.

(Additional details from NAN)
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