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Theft, vandalism rob Nigeria of benefits of high crude oil prices – NESG

Low production rate, theft and pipeline vandalism are the main factors which rob Nigeria of the benefits of high cost of crude oil in the global market.
The declaration was made by the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) in a communiqué issued at the end of a meeting of its Board of Directors.

The communiqué, issued in Abuja on Wednesday, was signed by the board chairman, Asue Ighodalo.

Mr Ighodalo stated that declining investment and divestment, high cost of production, and a harsh operating environment, also contributed to robbing Nigeria of the benefits.

“Nigeria is not appropriating the benefits of high global prices. As a result, fiscal pressure is imploding because of declining revenues and soaring public debt.

“Only recently, the Minister for Finance alerted Nigerians that the cost of debt servicing has surpassed Federal Government’s retained revenue as total public debt continues to rise.

“Meanwhile, the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Ways and Means financing to the Federal Government peaked at N19.6 trillion as of May, and the country maintains an unsustainable fuel subsidy regime,’’ he stated.

He said that the growing deficit meant that Nigeria would rely on borrowing to finance the 2022 budget.

Mr Ighodalo noted that in spite of increased budgetary allocation to defence and national security, insecurity has not abated.

“Despite some changes in the leadership of the national security apparatus, conditions have not improved.

“There…

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