The Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, has said that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration will increase Nigeria’s revenue and double the economy without having to increase tax’s paid by Nigerians.
In an interview with ARISE NEWS on Friday, while discussing the 2024 budget, the minister also said that the 2024 budget has provided for an increase in capital expenditure, as well as being particular in the reduction of deficit, which has been commented on by rating agencies around the world as a ‘significant improvement.’
Addressing the current revenue problems that are being faced by the Nigerian government, the Minister said, “Our revenue challenge has been there. We have recognised it, we can do better. And we have a president who is very clear, he is very profound in the way he thinks, and his ambitions are realistic, and we believe he will double this economy, will collect more revenue even without increasing tax rates so that public investments will improve.”
Speaking on the 2024 budget, Bagudu said that the renewed hope budget draws from the renewed hope agenda, which drew from the national consensus that Nigeria needs to grow at a faster rate.
“The most recent of that consensus is contained in Agenda 2050, which is a long-term perspective plan that was drawn on by us, the private sector, public sector, sub-nationals, federal civil society organizations, and other stakeholders.
“And that recognises that we need to grow at a much higher rate of growth than we have been experiencing in the last decade and a half. And equally, we need to mobilise private capital, because the Agenda 2050 estimated that we need investments at the minimum of the sum of at least $100 billion, with less than 20% of it coming from the public sector,” he said.
He then spoke of President Tinubu’s institutional realignment in his decision that the ministry of Budget and Economic Planning should be separate from the Ministry of Finance, as he said, “Our budget should emanate from a plan and we must maintain a plan, and that institutional realignment is what brought the division, that a plan based budget, which is part of what the 2024 budget is, and a budget that will support the restoration of macroeconomic stability, and it is such restoration that we believe will give the private sector the pride of place or confidence that they can invest.”
He also said that the 2024 budget provides for an increase in capital expenditure and is particular about the reduction of deficit. He said, “It might not look a big number, but in percentage terms, they dropped from 6.11% debt to deficit ratio in 2023 to less than 4% in 2024, it’s a significant number, and it is being noticed by investors. In all the three rating agencies around the world that have commented, that have improved on their outlook on Nigeria, commented among others about that significant improvement.”