President Muhammadu Buhari has disclosed that his administration would release the sum of N600 billion for Capital Expenditure between October and December 2019.
The President, who revealed this during his 59th Independence Day speech earlier on Tuesday at the State House, Abuja, explained that the fund was to increase investments in the nation’s critical infrastructure significantly.
He said, “The implementation of the 2019 Capital Budget, which was only approved in June 2019, will be accelerated to ensure that critical priority projects are completed or substantially addressed.
“To maximise impact, we shall continue to increasingly welcome and encourage private capital for infrastructural development through Public-Private Partnerships.
“Through the Road Infrastructure Tax Credit Scheme, which I initiated in January this year, we are giving incentives to private sector inflow of over N205 billion in 19 Nigerian roads and bridges of 794.4km across in 11 States of the Federation.”
According to the President, the Federal Government had so far released N1.74 trillion for the execution of various capital projects in the 2018 fiscal year.
On diversification of the economy, the President explained that the push would persist in the next one year.
“We will still remain focused on optimizing the revenues generated from the oil and gas sector.
“We will be working with the Legislature, soon to pass the Petroleum Industry Bill and amendments to the Deep Offshore Act and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contracts Act into law, to ensure the Government obtains a fair share of oil revenues, whilst encouraging private sector investment.
“We will also continue our fight against illegal bunkering of crude oil and the smuggling of refined petroleum products across our borders, including the diligent prosecution and conviction of offenders found guilty of these acts. Whilst Nigeria remains committed to free and fair continental and international trade, we will not hesitate to take all necessary steps to tackle illegal smuggling, transhipment and other predatory trade practices that destroy jobs in our country.”
The President noted that the exchange rate in the last three years had remained stable, with robust reserves of 42.5 billion dollars, up from 23 billion dollars in October. 2016.