Ahead of Wednesday’s anticipated assent of the 2018 Appropriation Bill by President Muhammadu Buhari, the Federal Ministry of Finance, on Tuesday said it has released the entire N1.58tr capital expenditure for the 2017 federal budget to various Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
A statement by Hassan Dodo, Director of Information at the Ministry, said Finance Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, gave the details in Abuja, noting that the capital release, up N360.799bn, or 29.58%, “is remarkably higher than the N1,219,471,747,443.00 total capital releases for 2016.”
Despite the economic challenges in 2017, she said the Federal Government was able to fully cash-back the capital releases, stressing that the sustained high allocations to key sectors reflecting the administration’s commitment to infrastructure development in the country.
According to details of the capital releases, Power, Works and Housing sectors, which incidentally are grouped into one Ministry, received the highest allocation of N523.011bn, which was 33.10% of the total capital releases. This was higher than the N307.411bn releases in 2016 capital budget, representing a 25.21% of total for that year.
Defence and Security followed from afar with N197.596bn or 12.50% in 2017, which was more than double the N77.532bn, or 6.36% of total releases the sector received in prior year.
The statement noted that agriculture and Water Resources got N149.485bn, representing 9.46% of the total releases in 2017, marginally higher than the N143.121bn, which represented 11.74% of the capital releases in 2016.
Transportation got a total of N126.253bn or 7.99% of the year’s total capital releases, but lower than N171.9bn, or 14.10% recorded in 2016.
Health and Education together received a total of N98.19bn or 6.21%, as against N56.27bn or 4.61% both the sectors received in 2016.
Other sectors combined however received a total of N485.734bn, representing 30.74% of the 2017 capital releases and slightly higher than the total of N463.234bn, or 37.99% disbursed to the sectors.
The Minister assured that the Federal Government was working assiduously to attract private capital to complement government spending in these key areas.