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FG to borrow N4.6tr to finance budget deficit

Director-General, Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Ben Akabueze has called on the private sector to co-operate with the Government in the payment of due taxes.

Mr. Akabueze who was speaking during a breakdown of the 2021 budget said although no new taxes have been introduced, the Government hoped to improve on its tax administration and collection system.

On the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine, Mr. Akabueze said the country expected donations through a Global Alliance of approved vaccines to cover 20% of the population, although what was required to achieve herd-immunity was 70% coverage. He said the cost for the difference of 50% would have to be borne by the citizens.

On financing the budget deficit, the Director-General, Debt Management Office, Ms. Patience Oniha said the N4.6 trillion deficit would be financed equally through domestic and foreign borrowing.

She said the domestic borrowing of N2.3tr would commence in January while the international capital was still being monitored to determine the favourable time to commence foreign borrowing.

On her part, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed said a special trust fund would be set up for monies borrowed from unclaimed dividends and dormant bank accounts, from which the owners would be paid once they were confirmed by the Registrars.

Biodun Dare

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