20 April 2012

Nigeria: FG, States, LGs Share N613 Billion for March

The Federal Government, the states and the local governments shared N613.6 billion from the Federation Account in March, the Minister of State for Finance, Dr Yerima Ngama, said on Friday in Abuja.

Ngama told reporters after the monthly Federal Account Allocation Committee meeting that the figure was N7.041 billion lower than the amount shared in February.

The minister said the country received a total revenue of N726.772 billion in March compared with N766.772 billion in the previous month.

A statement from the Accountant-General of the Federation, Mr Jonah Otunla, explained that the shortfall was due to a decrease in crude oil export for the month as a result of several "operational issues and safety challenges" in Bonga, Brass, Bonny and Qua Iboe Terminals."

Also, oil revenue slumped to N586.631 billion in March from N631.959 billion in February.

However, non-oil revenue increased to N90.141 in March from N74.813 billion in February, according to the minister.

The total revenue shared to all tiers of government included Value-Added Tax (VAT), refunds by the Nigerian National Petroleum NNPC and exchange gain.

"The total funds, statutory allocation, that are available for distribution is 496.308 billion and the total VAT collected which is also available for distribution for the month is N64.229 billion.

"These are almost the same with the actual collected for the month because the actual has 497.731 for the statutory allocation and the actual VAT collected is 69.529 billion, which is slightly below the budget.

"Because these two amounts are almost the same, there is no need for augmentation for the month of March so we didn't draw from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to augment any because we have enough revenue to distribute."

In addition, the minister said a total of N48.820 billion was distributed to all tiers of government from the exchange gain while NNPC refunded 7.617 billion.

"So the total distribution for statutory allocation is as follows: federal government will get N235.163 billion; state governments will get N119.278 billion and local governments will get N91.958 billion.

"We are distributing 49.908 billion as the derivation to the oil producing states.

"For VAT for the total of N64.229 billion, the Federal Government is getting N9.634 billion and state governments will get halve of it which is N32.115 billion and local governments will get 35 per cent of it, which is N22.48 billion," he said.

Responding to questions, the minister said the balance in the excess crude account still stood at 3.6 billion dollars.

The minister said for the months of February and March, the Federal Government did not draw funds from the ECA. Rather, it added N474.345 billion to the account.

He said that the government had enough funds to distribute to all tiers of government within the budgeted allocation.

"The depletion has stopped.

"In two consecutive months, we are not augmenting because we have enough revenue to distribute and that tells you that one area of depletion has been taken care of and the other area is whether or not we distribute.

"Right now in this month of March, we are actually transferring to excess crude account N173.928 billion so it is actually increasing.

"The figure for last month we transferred N300.417 billion to excess crude. The excess crude account is actually growing," he said.


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