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FG: Excess crude account declines to $2.45 bn



Nigeria’s Excess Crude Account, the equivalent of the Sovereign Wealth Fund, has plunged to $2.45 billion as oil prices continue to fall.

The balance in the dollar component of the excess crude oil revenue account depleted to about $2.45 billion in December 2014.

The account, which stood at about $4.11billion in October, dropped to about $3.11billion in November 2014.

Though there was a controversy of a missing $1billion from the account during the month, the Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said the money was used for the payment of part of the outstanding debt to petroleum products marketers.

The Minister of State for Finance, Bashir Yuguda, at the end of the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee, FAAC, meeting in Abuja on Friday, said the balance in the account for December 2014 stood at about $2.45 billion.

Details of the balance of the account released at the end of the FAAC meeting showed that the transfer to the account as a result of foreign exchange gain dropped from N1.767 billion to about N665 million.

The Accountant General of the Federation, AGF, Jonah Otunla, said in a statement at the end of the meeting that the balance in the account dropped from about $3.11 billion to $2.45 billion in December.

The new balance in the account followed the withdrawal of the equivalent of N15.631 billion to augment the shortfall in allocation available for distribution to the three tiers of government for the month.

The expected revenue proposed in the 2014 approved budget for December was N688.938 billion.

But following the continued decline in global oil prices at the international market since the beginning of the year, there was a decline in oil revenue in the Federation Account and a shortfall in the monthly allocation available for distribution.

In December, about N381.58billion realized as oil revenue for the month was lower by N36.032 billion from the expected revenue of N417.612 billion proposed in the 2014 budget.

Similarly, non-oil revenue, which stood at about N107.796 billion was lower by N57.927 billion from about N185.323 billion proposed in the budget.

The minister said the withdrawal of N15.631 billion from the ECA was to augment the difference of N92.9 billion between total allocation realized for the month (N490.031billion) and about N582.935 billion proposed in the budget.

Premium Times, January 18, 2015

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