President Muhammadu Buhari has arrived at the National Assembly to present the 2020 appropriation bill to the joint session of the assembly for approval.
Concise News reports that the President came into the Assembly at 2:04 pm and exchanged pleasantries with the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gabjabiamila.
2:05pm: National Anthem was taken.
2:07pm: Muslim and Christian prayers were observed.
2:09pm: Senate President Ahmad Lawan addressing the joint session of the National Assembly.
2:18pm: Buhari begins the budget presentation
2:19pm: Buhari says the nation’s Gross Domestic Product has grown from 1.93 percent in 2018 to 2.02 percent in the first half of 2019.
2:20pm: He says inflation down from peak of ~18% in Jan 2017 to ~11% by August 2019. External reserves up from $23bn in October 2016 to ~$42bn in Sept 2019.
2:21pm: Buhari says Capital importation up from $12bn in H1 2018 to $14bn in H1 2019.
2:22pm: Buhari says 2018 capital budget implemented till June 2019 and that N294.6 billion released for capital projects under 2019 budget, as of Sept 30, 2019. “I have directed the Federal Ministry of Finance to release additional N600 billion for capital by end of 2019.”
-Benchmark Oil Price : $57 Production: 2.18m bpd FX: N305/$
-Proposed Increase of VAT from 5% to 7.5%. He says 2020 budget based on new VAT rate. Increased revenues will be used to fund education, health and infrastructure. VAT Act already exempts Pharma, Educational items and basic commodities.
2:24pm: Buhari says his government will raise the threshold for VAT registration to N25m turnover per annum, to bring relief to small(est) businesses.
2:44pm: 2.46 trillion Naira is proposed for capital projects in the 2020 budget, the president reveals.
2:45pm: The President says the main emphasis will be on the completion of as many ongoing projects as possible, instead of starting new ones.
2:50pm: Top #Budget2020Ng Allocations include Works and Housing : N262b Power: N127bn Transportation: N123bn UBE: 112bn Defence: N100bn Zonal Intervention Projects: N100bn Agriculture and Rural Devt: N83bn Water Resources: N82bn Niger Delta: 81bn Education: N48bn Social Work:30bn, FCT: 28bn.
2:53pm: Nigeria remains committed to meet its debt service obligations. – President Buhari.
2:55pm: President Buhari says the goal is for the 2020 Appropriation Act to come into effect on January 1, 2020.
2:59pm: President Buhari steps down from the podium and heads to his seat as NASS stands in his honour.
3:00pm: Buhari shakes hands with key officers of the National Assembly.
3:03pm: Hon Gbajabiamila addressed the joint session.
3:13pm: Muslim and Christian prayers were said.
3:14pm: The National Anthem was sung.
3:15pm: The session is brought to a close.