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FG insists on $65-per-barrel oil benchmark for 2015 budget

FG insists on $65-per-barrel oil benchmark for 2015 budget
January 20
18:21 2015

The federal government will not go back on the $65 per barrel oil benchmark upon which the 2015 budget is hinged, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, coordinating minister of the economy and minister of finance, said on Tuesday.

In November, Okonjo-Iweala announced that the 2015 budget would be predicated on an oil benchmark of $65, explaining that the government had a scenario-based approach to managing the falling price of crude oil on the world market.

And on Tuesday, in a terse message from her ministry, she said: “We are not reviewing the budget benchmark price at the moment. The price of oil is still quite volatile and we do not know how it will bottom out.”

“We are taking a scenario-based approach in handling the 2015 budget. That means that for various levels of oil price, we have additional measures both on the revenue and expenditure side, which will kick in when it bottoms out.

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“The Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) is currently at the national assembly. We have been working together with our lawmakers to ensure that we steer the country in the right direction during this period.”

The 2015 budget passed second reading at the senate last week, but senators described it as “unrealistic”.

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