- Category: Business and Economy
- Published on Thursday, 27 May 2010 08:29
- Written by Admin
- Hits: 1753
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the committee's meeting was suspended on May 14 based on what the Minister of State for Finance, Mr Remi Babalola, described as ``deliberation on the consideration of the statutory allocation and arrears’’.
Addressing newsmen on Monday in Abuja, Babalola said the distribution showed an increase of N126.999 billion compared with what was shared in March.
The increase was attributed to the higher price of crude oil in the international market and the increase in the Production Sharing Contract and Modified Carry Arrangement.
``The total amount that is distributed when you look at April allocation and with the arrears is N749.88 billion.
``This is made up of N410 billion for the allocation of April and N339.6 billion for arrears from January to March.
``It is based strictly on the doctrine of economic pragmatism which is based on the actual, using the benchmark price,’’ he said.
Babalola explained that the distribution was based on the benchmark of oil price of $67 per barrel which was the actual amount seen in the first quarter of 2010.
``Now we are going on with negotiations and further discussions on how to review the budget in such a way that we have a more realistic revenue profile.
``Basically on the revenue profile and the benchmark price, we are working together to make sure we have a review.
``The most important thing is making sure that we have a sustainable intergenerational equity,’’ he added.
Also, the Accountant-General of the Federation, Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo, noted that the excess crude account had been building up since the first quarter of the year.
``From January to date, we have been keeping some money in the excess crude account and the balances have been increasing.
``The current balance of the excess crude is about $4.6 billion before the arrears,’’ he said.
He stated that the N339.627 arrears augmented from the account was not only as a result of variation in oil price but also as a result of the exchange rate.
He said the exchange rate in 2009 was N125 to the dollar while in 2010, the rate had increased to N150 to the dollar.
According to him, the excess crude account accounted for about N129 billion at the time the rate was low.
``So it was also a reserve account which we set aside because it was not appropriated.
``Now that it has been appropriated, that amount has been distributed and in the local excess crude account, we have at present about N89 billion,’’ he said.
Mr Rebo Usman, the Chairman of the Commissioners’ Forum, said there was the need for the Federal Government to look into the law to ensure that revenue allocations were properly handled. (NAN)