Latest data released by the Central Bank of Nigeria has revealed that the net credit to the federal Government rose by 118.45% to N2.51tn, compared with the growth of 169.44% or N1.15tn recorded at the end of the second half of 2014.
According to the statistics, the net domestic credit of the banking system to the economy rose by 11.1% to N21.4tn at the end of the first half of this year.
The figure, derived from CBN’s Financial Stability Report for the first half of 2015, however represents a decline when compared with the growth of 32.6% and 14.8% at the end of the preceding and corresponding period of 2014.
It stated, “The development reflected, wholly, the rise in investment in treasury securities by the banking system, particularly Nigerian Treasury Bills, which grew by 10.4 per cent.
“Persistent increase in credit to government deprives the private sector of needed credit to boost economic growth.” The report added that consumer credit fell by 9.6 per cent to N768.67bn at the end of June below the level at the end of second half of 2014.
In another development, Nigeria’s foreign reserves which stood at $30.11billion by October, 2015 has dropped to $30.4 billion. The Central Bank said the $30.04 billion represented the “gross” amount, while $29.33 billion was “liquid” and $719.32 million “blocked”.
The reserves hit $36.3 billion in October 2014, fell to $32.4 billion in January 2015, and stood at $28.6 billion by May 2015.
Under the new government of Muhammadu Buhari, the reserves gained marginally to $31.9 billion by July, before sliding again to $29.9 billion by September.