Zainab Ahmed
Zainab Ahmed

FG to lift 35m people out of poverty, create 21m new jobs – Minister

NEWS DIGEST – The Federal Government has projected that its National Development Plan (NDP) will lift 35 million Nigerians out of poverty and create 21 million jobs within the next three years.

According to a report by Guardian Newspaper, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr Zainab Ahmed, who disclosed this in Abuja, added that the investment is expected to result in Nigeria achieving improved competitiveness of the economy with a Gross Development Product growth of five to six per cent.

The federal and state governments as well as the private sector will fund the plan, with an investment size of N348.1trillion. The funders from the public sector will contribute N49.7trillion, subnational will contribute N20.1trillion, while N29.6 trillion will come from the Federal Government. The private sector is projected to contribute N298.3trillion to funding the Plan.

“At least 35 million people will be lifted out of poverty by 2025. 21 million full time jobs will be generated for the young workforce to leveraged, and this will significantly enhanced capacity at the national and sub-national levels,” she said.

She further explained that the sectoral composition in the NDP 2021-2025 includes economic growth and development, infrastructure, public administration, human capital development, social development, regional development and plan implementation, communication, financing, monitoring and evaluation.

According to her, the NDP is aimed at accelerating growth, deepening the initiative for diversified growth and fostering sustainable development.

The Minister highlighted that the 2022 Federal budget is the first key public sector contribution to implementing the plan. She said the vision for the NDP 2021 – 2025 is for Nigeria to be a country that has unlocked potentials in all sectors of the economy for sustainable, holistic and inclusive national development, while the mission is to guide the implementation of programmes and policies that promote rapid multi-sectoral growth and development of Nigeria’s economy.

The strategic objectives of the Plan include to establish a strong foundation for a concentric diversified economy with robust MSME growth and a more resilient business environment; invest in critical physical, financial, digital and innovation infrastructure; build a solid framework and enhance capacities to strengthen security and ensure good governance; enable a vibrant, educated and healthy populace.

Its cross-cutting enablers are expected to lead to investment in the social infrastructure and services required to alleviate poverty and drive inclusive economic empowerment, promote development opportunities across states to minimise regional, economic and social disparities.

While stressing the need for Nigeria to diversify its economic base away from oil and gas to fund critical developmental expenditures, Dr Ahmed said the yearly tradition of enacting Finance Acts to accompany the federal budget is one of many Strategic Revenue Generation Initiatives (SRGIs) being undertaken by the Federal Government to optimise domestic revenue and resource mobilisation.

She added that while ongoing fiscal reforms to enhance non-oil revenues are yielding tangible results, there remains a significant fiscal gap to be bridged to effectively finance the 2022 Budget and other tiers of government.

The Minister maintained that the Finance Act 2022 enacts significant tax, fiscal and other reforms to drive domestic revenue mobilisation, saying more fiscal reforms and measures may be required during the 2022 fiscal year to deal with emerging fiscal constraints and challenges, particularly as the economy recovers.

She assured that the current administration remains committed to continuous dialogue and robust engagement with all key stakeholders in developing and implementing its fiscal policies.