Buhari to Unveil New Economic Plan in December

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Clem Agba

James Emejo in Abuja

The Minister of State for Finance, Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba, yesterday disclosed that the Medium-term National Development Plans (MTNDP) 2021-2025, will be launched by President Muhammadu Buhari in December.

He also said the second MTNDP (2026 – 2030) report is due in February 2021 while final development blueprint for the Nigeria Agenda 2050 will be ready in July next year.

Speaking at a press briefing on the update for the development plans which are currently being drafted by relevant stakeholders, the minister said the job was being fast-tracked to ensure that annual budgets, particularly 2021 appropriation is derived from the medium-term plans.

He said as a result, in preparing the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) being used for the preparation of the 2021 budget, which was approved by the National Assembly, the fundamentals of the macroeconomic framework for the medium-term plan 2021 – 2025 were brought into focus.

Agba added that the macroeconomic indices used for the development of the Economic Sustainability Plan of N2.3 trillion stimulus package to hedge the economy from sliding into deep and prolonged recession due to the impact of COVID-19 had been integrated into the MTNDP.

He pointed out that the steps were all taken to ensure that, henceforth, annual budgets are derived from national development plans, to foster plan discipline in successive years.

He also said that the federal government intended to deepen consultations with sub-national governments to ensure that plan discipline is entrenched in the system, if the country is to make the desired changes in the economy.

The minister said that the macroeconomic framework and growth diagnostic technical working group (TWG) had after three months and two weeks of tedious and rigorous work produced a macroeconomic framework report, which had been shared with the central working group and presented to the remaining 25 TWGs to guide the ongoing work on their thematic areas.

He said work had reached an advanced stage on the finalisation of the long term models adding that it will be used for projections for macroeconomic and development blocks of the Agenda 2050.

The minister said the federal government is committed to producing truly national development plans and not just federal government plans, pointing out that six state governors, one from each of the six geopolitical zones, the representatives of major political parties are involved at the steering committee level for the development of the plans.

He noted that at the moment, efforts are ongoing to also engage the grassroots through the states and the local government in the planning process which shall take place via town hall meetings where memoranda from town development associations and traditional rulers shall be received to deepen engagement, participation and ownership.

Agba said: “In addition, we are looking forward to developing an inclusive and participatory national Plan that is sufficiently comprehensive with the capacity to accelerate the attainment of various regional and global agendas, including the AU Agenda 2063, ECOWAS integration Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals 2030.”

With the terminal dates for the existing Vision 20:2020 and the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) due in December- and to avoid a vacuum- Buhari had approved and directed the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning to prepare successor plans from which government could derive its policies going forward.