13 December 2015, Lagos – An economic expert, Uche Uwaleke, has expressed concern over the proposed oil production of 2.2 million barrels per day in 2016, saying the projection might not be feasible.
Mr. Uwaleke, a professor, said in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that the country might not be able to meet the production target.
“So for the output, we would have gone for something that is a little beat lower,” he said.
On the government’s plans to spend more on capital projects, the expert said it was necessary, considering the state of the country’s economy.
“As a developing country, we need to spend more on capital projects because that is the only way we can grow the economy, so it is a welcomed idea,” Mr. Uwaleke said.
He praised the pledge by the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, and the Nigeria Customs Service to generate up to N4 trillion for the economy.
According to him, if this is achieved, the government would be able to generate its fund from the non-oil sector as proposed in the 2016 budget.
He further commended the efforts by the ministry of Budget and National Planning to provide a workable budget proposal for the country.
Mr. Uwaleke said the proposed N6 trillion budget for 2016 by the Federal Government was commendable and very realistic.
He said the oil bench mark of 38 dollar per barrel was the least the country had had so far, adding that there was every indication that it could be achieved.
“It has been well analysed that oil will not drop further, that is below 38 dollar per barrel in the near future.
“I believe the proposal is realistic. Right now it is about 40 dollar per barrel, the supplementary bench mark was 48 dollar, so I think a low reference is realistic,” he said.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udoma, had said the federal government was proposing a budget of N6trillion with a 38 dollars oil benchmark.
The minister said the proposal was contained in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework, MTEF, approved by the Federal Executive Council.
Mr. Udoma said the funding for the budget would come from earnings from the non-oil sector and most of the increases would be spent on capital projects.