In the just concluded week, total debt figure released by the Debt Management Office (DMO) showed that Nigeria’s total public debt stock for the second quarter of 2020 increased by 8.31% to N31.01 trillion as at June 2020 (from N28.63 trillion as at March 2020).
The increase in the country’s total debt stock was chiefly due to a rise in external debt stock by 13.78% to N11.36 trillion (or USD31.48 billion at N361.00/USD) as at June 2020 from N9.99 trillion (or USD27.67 billion at N361.00/USD) in March 2020 – Nigeria received additional USD3.36 billion worth of loan from International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Q2 according to independent financial analysis verified by Eksperten.
Despite the increase in the external debt stock, external debt service payments fell to N103.62 billion (or USD287.04 million) as at June 2020 from N170.60 billion (or USD472.57 million) as at March 2020.
Similarly, domestic debt stock increased by 5.39% to N19.65 trillion in June 2020 (from N18.64 trillion as at March 2020) as Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) increased its regular and sukkuk bond issuances by N681.75 billion and N162.56 billion respectively within the period under review.
Further breakdown of the domestic debt figure showed that FG’s domestic debt stock rose to N15.46 trillion as at June 2020 (from N14.53 trillion as at March 2020); also, states’ debt increased slightly to N4.19 trillion (from N4.11 trillion). Domestic debt service payment plunged q-o-q by 48.65% to N312.81 billion in Q2 2020 from N609.13 billion in Q1 2020.
Elsewhere, the era of subsidy payment on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) by FG has now become a thing of the past as FG finally deregulated the downstream oil sector by opting out of price-fixing.
According to Executive Secretary of Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), the pump price of petrol will henceforth be determined by the forces of demand and supply as well as the cost of crude oil at the international market.
The Federal Government, through the PPPRA, had earlier embarked on partial deregulation or a petrol pricing regime in March 2020, in which it released – in about three months – guiding price bands of the petrol pump price. Amid the partial deregulation, the pump price was increased thrice till it eventually reached N158 – N160 per litre.
Going forward, and moving from partial to full downstream oil sector deregulation, the oil marketers are now free to source for foreign currency to import PMS on their own and fix their prices.
On the foreign scene, WTI crude plunged further week-on-week by 9.84% to USD37.30 a barrel given a 7.85% fall in US crude oil input to refineries to 12.78 mb/d as at Sept. 4, 2020 (it tanked by 26.96 % from 17.49 mb/d printed in Sept 6, 2019).
Also, U.S. commercial crude oil inventories (excluding those in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve) rose w-o-w by 0.41% to 500.43 million barrels (and rose by 20.28% from 416.07 million barrels as at Sept. 6, 2019).
Similarly, Brent dipped further by 9.08% to USD40.06 a barrel while Bonny Light fell by 6.52% to USD39.26 a barrel as at Thursday, September 10, 2020.
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Fitch Ratings’ new interactive country-by-country map of bank rating trends shows that the balance of Outlooks globally has turned sharply negative since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. The proportion of bank ratings on Negative Outlook or Rating Watch Negative (RWN) shot up to over 60% at end-1H20 from 13% at end-2019. The proportion on RWN was 10%, the highest in recent years, reflecting near-term risks to many banks’ ratings. There were virtually no ratings on Positive Outlook or Rating Watch Positive.
The Debt Management Office on Wednesday, 9th September, announced that Nigeria’s public debt has risen to N31.01 trillion at the end of June.