Grant: Exporters lament N527bn govt debt

In what could be a bad signal to the country’s export commitment by local manufacturers, the Federal Government has failed to pay exporters about N527 billion in Export Expansion Grant (EEG). The development has a grave consequence on the national non-oil export revenue target plan.

Disclosing this yesterday to journalists during the third annual general meeting of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria Export Promotion Group (MANEG) in Lagos, Chairman of MANEG, Chief Ede Dafinone, a chartered accountant, said the nonpayment of all the grants to manufacturers was brewing instability in the export sector, and may affect the country’s non-oil export revenue target of N5 trillion for 2020.

The MANEG helmsman gave an insight into the EEG, saying that the total amount approved by the National Assembly for Nigerian exporters was N197 billion, which has been delayed. Also, there is a further N130 billion that is yet to be approved by the National Assembly and the current backlog for the outstanding is approximately between N150 billion and N200 billion. Besides that, Dafinone stressed that there was a backlog created for the period of 2017 of which only 17 per cent has been paid while 2018 and 2019 is still outstanding.

Dafinone said: “The total amount approved by the National Assembly on issue of promissory note in respect of Export Expand Grant payment that have been delayed came to about N197 billion.

“The Debt Management Office (DMO) split that into batches for payment and they are currently on the third batch. The aim is to pay off the debt amounting to N197 billion. “Sometime in 2019, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) issued export credit certificate to exporters for the 2017 EEG, but at the time, only 17 per cent of the amount that has been paid using those export credit certificates.




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