The Debt Management Office (DMO) says Nigeria’s total public debt — federal and state governments — hit N49.85 trillion at the end of the first quarter (Q1) of 2023.
The figure represents an increase of N3.60 trillion compared to N46.25 trillion recorded at the end of December 2022.
In a statement issued on Friday, DMO said the debt excludes the N22.71 trillion ways and means advances of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
“As at March 31, 2023, the total public debt stock comprising the external and domestic debts of the federal government of Nigeria (FGN), the thirty-six (36) States, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) was N49.85 trillion (USD 108.30 billion),” DMO said.
“Comparatively, the total public debt stock for the preceding period, December 31, 2022, stood at N46.25 trillion (USD 103.31 billion). During the period, there were increases in the debt stock of the FGN, States, and the FCT.
“The public debt stock for March 2023 does not include the FGN’s N22.719 trillion Ways and Means Advances of the Central Bank of Nigeria whose securitization was approved by the National Assembly in May 2023.
“The amount will be included in the FGN’s Domestic Debt Stock from June 2023.”
Ways and means is a loan facility through which the CBN finances the government’s budget shortfalls.
In January 2023, TheCable reported that former President Muhammadu Buhari asked the senate to securitise the N22.7 trillion ways and means loan.
Securitisation is the practice of pooling together various types of debt instruments and selling them as bonds to investors.