With N996.44bn Debt, Lagos Tops List of States with High Domestic Debt 

Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja

Lagos State, Nigeria’s economic nerve-centre has continued to retain its status as the state with the highest domestic debt profile, chalking up a total of N996.44 billion (N996,440,044,235.35) as at June 30, 2023.

According to the latest figures published by the Debt Management Office (DMO), Lagos’ debt grew from N812,383 billion (N812,383,923,050.01) as at March 31, 2023 followed by Delta State with N465.404 billion (N465,404,504,431.59), from N421.776 billion (N421,776,084,974.72).

Ogun State is third on the list with N293.2billion (N293,204,959,775.19) and Rivers State fourth with N225.5 billion (N225,505,011,357). Imo is next on the list with N220.83 billion (N220,838,595,301.38).

On the surface, while Rivers State stands on the fourth position among the states with the highest domestic debt profile, the DMO reported that it has not updated its debt status for about two years.

The last updated figure for Rivers was N225.5 billion as at September 30, 2021.

In the latest debt figures released by the DMO, only Domestic  31 states had their debt profiles updated as at June 30, 2023.

The states are Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta and  Ebonyi.

Others are Edo, Ekiti, Enugu, Gombe, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe and Zamfara.

According to the DMO, the Domestic Debt Data Report is generated from the signed-off received from the 36 states of the Federation and Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Meanwhile, the DMO in its latest public debt statistics said Nigeria’s total public debt stock stood at  N87.38 trillion at the end of the second quarter of 2023.

This is an increase of 75.29 per cent or N37.53 trillion vis-a-vis  the sum of  N49.85 trillion posted as at the end of March 31, 2023.

According to the DMO, the new debt stock includes the N22.71 trillion Ways and Means Advances from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

“Nigeria’s total public debt stock as at June 30, 2023, was N87.38tn ($113.42bn). It comprises the total domestic and external debts of the Federal Government of Nigeria, the thirty-six states, and the Federal Capital Territory.

“The major addition to the Public Debt Stock was the inclusion of the N22.712tn securitized FGN’s Ways and Means Advances,” the DMO report said.

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