The Debt Management Office (DMO) has attributed the ever-increasing external debt to excessive borrowings habit of successive governments for many years.
Naija News understands that the DMO made this known in a statement released in Abuja on Tuesday.
It said that it was not appropriate to attribute the Public Debt Stock to any particular administration.
It, however, explained that President Muhammadu Buhari submitted a request to the National Assembly for approval of the 2016 – 2018 Medium Term External Borrowing Plan for the sum of 22.718 billion dollars.
According to the statement, this request is not a new one as being perceived but rather it represents those borrowings which have been submitted to the National Assembly but are yet to be approved before the expiration of the 8th Assembly.
“The requests in the Plan are proposed borrowings from multilateral and bilateral lenders.
“The proposed loans are concessional, semi-concessional, long-tenored and are for the purpose of financing infrastructure and other developmental social projects.“All of which have multiplier effects in terms of job creation, business opportunities and overall increase in Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
“Also, the benefits are long term and will serve generations of Nigerians.
“The proposed New Borrowing is consistent with the subsisting Debt Management Strategy which seeks to replace short term high –interest cost domestic debt.“With low interest long term external debt and is one of the measures that is being implemented to moderate the level of Debt Service.
“The achievements in this regard are evidenced in the declining share of Domestic Debt in the Total Public Debt from over 83 per cent in December 2015 to about 68 per cent in June 2019,” it explained.
The statement noted that Nigeria had a ceiling of 25 percent on the total public debt stock to GDP which is Debt to GDP and it had operated within.It said that the ratios for December 31, 2018, and June 30, 2019, were 19.09 and 18.99 per cent respectively.