Nigerian govt spent $1.12bn on foreign debt servicing in Q1|24 - CBN - Ripples Nigeria
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Nigerian govt spent $1.12bn on foreign debt servicing in Q1|24 – CBN

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The Federal Government spent $1.12 billion on foreign debt service payments in the first quarter of 2024.

This brought to the fore the growing burden of external debt on the country’s finances.

A data from the international payment segment of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) website revealed that debt service payments increased steadily between January and March.

The monthly breakdown of the debt service payments highlights a fluctuating yet consistently high expenditure pattern by the government.

In January, the country spent $560.52 million on foreign debt servicing, the figure came down to $283.22 million the following month before coming further down to $276.17 million in March 2024.

However, the significant debt servicing obligation of $560.52 million in January was in contrast to the $112 million in the corresponding period in 2023 by nearly 500%.

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In February, the debt servicing payments were somewhat moderate but remained substantial at $283.22 million.

It is lower than January’s massive outflow, and February 2023’s debt servicing of $288.54 million.

March 2024 continued the trend but at a lower figure, with Nigeria expending $276.17 million on debt servicing.

While this represented a slight decrease compared to February and a far lesser decrease from March 2023’s $400.47 billion, it was still a notable expenditure, further burdening the country’s fiscal position.

It would be recalled that the Debt Management Office DMO had stated that Nigeria incurred a debt service of $3.5 billion for its external loans in 2023.

This was a 55 percent increase from the $2.6 billion incurred in 2022 as debt service-related payments for the country’s external debts.

By: Babajide Okeowo

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