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Nigeria’s Public Debt Reaches Record High of N46.25 Trillion

Nigeria's Public Debt Reaches Record High of N46.25 Trillion

The Debt Management Office (DMO) has reported that Nigeria’s total public debt stock rose to N46.25tn or $103.11bn in the fourth quarter of 2022. This figure is an increase of N6.69trn or $7.34bn from the debt figure of N44.06tn as of September 2022. The debt stock consists of domestic and external debt stocks of the Federal Government and sub-national governments (36 state governments and the Federal Capital Territory).

In terms of composition, the total domestic debt stock was N27.55tn ($61.42bn) while the total external debt stock was N18.70tn ($41.69bn). The increase in the total public debt stock was due to new borrowings by the FGN and sub-national governments to fund budget deficits and execute projects, as well as the issuance of promissory notes to settle some liabilities.

Lagos had the highest debt profile with a total of N807.21 billion in Q4 2022, followed by Delta 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.

According to the DMO, the total public debt to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio for December 31, 2022, was 23.20 per cent, which is slightly higher than the figure for December 31, 2021, at 22.47 per cent. This ratio is still 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.

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