aregbesolaThe National Economic Council (NEC) on Thursday approved the sharing of $150 million from the $400 million Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) dividend by the Federal Government and the states.

The Council also approved that the balance of $250 million be invested in the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority to increase its capital.

Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola relayed the decision of the council to the press at the end of the meeting shed more lights on the key decisions: “Council resolved that the balance of $150 million of the said $400 million NLNG fund be shared accordingly in the prescribed formulae at the Federation Account.

“The Managing Director of the Sovereign Wealth Fund Authority presented the status report on the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) to the council. After due deliberations on the report, the council agreed that $250m from the $400m NLNG dividend be invested in the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority to increase its capital.

According to Governor Aregbesola, the Buhari-led “Council directed the Minister of Finance to constitute an executive nomination committee and work in consultation with NEC to appoint appropriate persons to take over as board members of the NSIA if the current board is dissolved.”

On government agencies generating revenues in foreign currency but remitting naira into the federation account, he said the Council mandated the Ministry of Finance to investigate the matter and report back.

He also said that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was mandated to enlighten the public on the forex policy and relevant laws and regulations to guide traders and others who encounter challenges regarding the movement of foreign currency across the nation’s borders. “We understood that some traders, particularly in the East, encounter challenges at the airports when they intend to go about their businesses,” he added

On the balance in the Excess Crude Account (ECA), Aregbesola said: “At the end of the NEC meeting today, the Accountant-General of the Federation reported that the balance of the ECA stood at $2.257 billion and that is not much change from the last report.”

The governor also said that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Senior Resident Representative made presentation at a workshop for governors during the Council meeting on Treasury Single Account (TSA). “Presentations were made on the listed sub topics: Implementation of TSA in states”: lessons and experience; cash management and TSA reform: an overview of international practice; and budgeting reforms,” he explained.

By Olisemeka Obeche

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