The share of dividend remitted to the Federal Government by the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas company between January and December 2020 exceeded the projected target in the 2020 revised budget of the government by N63.62bn.

A document obtained from the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning on the Federal Government’s revenue performance in 2020 showed that the government projected a retained revenue of N80.38bn as its share of dividend from NLNG in the 2020 revised budget.

Nigeria LNG Limited, one of the world’s top 10 suppliers of liquefied natural gas is an incorporated joint venture owned by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, 49 per cent; Shell Gas B.V., 25.6 per cent; Total Gaz Electricite Holdings France, 15 per cent; and Eni International N.A. N.V. S.àr.l, 10.4 per cent.

The government, however, got N144bn from the gas company as actual dividend during the review period, representing an increase of N63.62bn when compared to the target for the year.

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This represents 79 per cent higher value than the N80.38bn projected target in the 2020 revised budget.

The revenue performance document also showed that the Federal Government garnered more revenue than it projected in the 2020 revised budget from oil.

The 2020 revised budget put the Federal Government’s projected revenue from oil at N1.01tn but the actual retained revenue for the year under review was N1.52tn. This showed that the government retained N507.67bn higher than it projected in the revised budget for 2020, which represented a 50 per cent increase on the target.

While the 2020 revised budget projected a retained revenue of N1.9bn for the Federal Government from minerals and mining, the actual revenue that was generated from the sector was N2.09bn. It was however observed that the actuals from non-oil revenue, Company Income Tax and Value Added Tax were lower than their respective projected targets in the revised budget.

The retained revenue projections of the Federal Government for non-oil revenue, CIT and VAT in the revised budgets were N1.62tn, N821.67bn and N284.11bn, while their actuals were N1.28tn, N673.22bn and N192.66bn respectively.

Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, recently said revenue generation remained the most critical fiscal issue over the medium term.

She noted that several measures were being instituted to improve government revenue and entrench a regime of prudence with emphasis on achieving value for money.

Ahmed explained that improving the country’s tax administration framework to optimise government revenue was a major thrust of the Federal Government’s Strategic Revenue Growth Initiatives.

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