Prof. Uche Uwaleke, president, Association of the Capital Market Academics of Nigeria, says every effort must be made to improve the country’s revenue collection to meet up with the projected expenditure in the 2023 budget.
He also stressed the need to monitor closely the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and government’s independent revenues.
“As the president rightly noted, the greatest threat to budget performance is the revenue side.
“I also think the fiscal deficit of over N10 trillion can be trimmed, especially by pruning down the over N1 trillion overhead costs,” he said.
The finance expert also lauded the early presentation of the 2023 budget proposal, saying it ensured the sustainability of the return to the January to December budget cycle.
He said it was equally noteworthy that the finance bill would be considered alongside the 2023 appropriation bill as well as the fact that the budget of government owned enterprises was integrated to promote transparency.
He added that the oil price benchmark of 70 dollars was conservative in line with budget principles.
“I also think the oil production benchmark of 1.69mbpd is realistic given the assurance by the president that the NNPC Ltd. is doing something to curb oil theft and pipeline vandalism.
“It is, however, worrisome that capital expenditure as a proportion of total spending has gone down well below the government target of 30 per cent, while debt service at over N6 trillion is in excess of amount budgeted for capital expenditure,” he said.