CBN Faults Buhari's Govt. $57 2020 Budget Oil Benchmark
CBN headquarters (Image: Guardian Nigeria)

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said the $57 oil benchmark adopted by the Federal Government for the 2020 budget is unrealistic.

Concise News understands that the CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele who noted this in Abuja called for its downward review.

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Emefiele spoke at the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) where he lamented the lull in the futures market, saying that prices would remain relatively weak into the foreseeable future.

The CBN boss “therefore, urged the Federal Government to reconsider its 2020 budget oil price benchmark of $57 per barrel, to build fiscal buffers.”

Also, the present policy of the CBN on loan-to-deposit ratio has led to loans and advances by banks to businesses increasing by over N1.1 trillion between June and October.

“These actions have assisted in boosting credit to the agricultural and manufacturing sectors, hence, the positive outcome on the GDP,” the CBN boss said.

“The MPC is hopeful that the LDR initiative must be sustained as interest rates being paid by borrowers have so far dropped by up to 400 basis points between June and October 2019.”

He noted that these have happened with a corresponding fall in Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) to 6.5 per cent at the end of last month.

“The MPC is of the view that the improvements in the macroeconomic indicators such as the GDP, NPLs, Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) and the LDR, suggest that current monetary policy stance is yielding results.

“As a result, the MPC resolved by a unanimous vote to retain the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) at 13.5 per cent and to hold all other policy parameters constant by retaining the asymmetric corridor at +200/-500 basis points around the MPR; retain the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) at 22.5 per cent; and retain the Liquidity Ratio at 30 per cent.”