Federal Government Raises Crude a Oil Benchmark Price To US$57 A Barrel 

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Yemisi Izuora

The federal government has proposed in the 2020 appropriation budget to increase crude oil benchmark price from 55 dollars to 57 dollars per barrel.

President Muhammadu Buhari made the announcement on Tuesday when he presented the 2020 national budget spending bill at a joint session of the National Assembly.

The benchmark serves as a reference price for buyers and sellers of the country’s crude oil.

According to the president, the profit of the increment is to be used to pay salaries and emolument of the proposed 30,000 recruitment of 30,000 personnel in the police, army, immigration, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.

On an earlier upgrade of the price in 2018 from 45 dollars to 50.5 dollars, oil experts expressed optimism in the increase, saying it will bring hope to the populace and boost the economy.

On October 3, the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, NEITI, said the oil and gas sector plays a significant role in the nation’s economy, as it accounts for 65 percent of total revenue to the government.

In the fiscal bill proposed by Buhari, the daily production of crude oil stood at 2.18 million barrels per day as the nation’s oil regulatory agency, Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC and security agencies make efforts to curb menaces of oil theft and vandalization.

The bill also maintained the exchange rate of 305 nairas to one dollar, as seen over the past three years with an expectation of 2.93 percent gross domestic product growth rate in 2020.

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