..As NNPC explains N23.4bn NESS debt
From Uche Usim, Abuja
The three tiers of government shared N465.149 billion from the January 2017 Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) disbursements. Details from the FAAC show that the figure is N65.149 billion higher than what was shared in December 2016.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Alhaji Mahmoud Isa-Dutse, who disclosed this yesterday in Abuja at the end of the meeting said he was excited that there was improvement in Federal government revenue despite the Force Majeure and total shut-down of pipelines for repairs and maintenance due to leakages and sabotage.
A breakdown of the figures show that Petroleum Profit Tax (PPT) collected increased remarkably, while revenues from Companies Income Tax (CIT), Value Added Tax (VAT), import duties and royalty dropped.
For January, a total of N273.452 billion was shared as statutory allocation with the Federal Government pocketing N133.192 billion, state governments N67.557 billion, local governments councils N52.083 billion and N20.620 was disbursed as 13 per cent derivation to oil mineral producing states.
From VAT proceeds, the Federal Government received N10.587 billion, state governments N35.291 billion and local government councils N24.703 billion.
Isa-Dutse further said that $2.458 billion was left on the Excess Crude Account (ECA).
Meanwhile, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) yesterday explained why it owed N23.4 billion in respect of Nigerian Export Supervision Scheme (NESS) fees chargeable on crude oil and gas exports since 2008. NESS fees are payments due to pre-shipment inspection agents and monitoring and evaluation agents in respect of their supervision of crude oil and gas exports, culminating in generation of Clean Certificate of Inspections (CCI) to an exporter as permit to execute action. As usual, at the end of each reconciliation, agreed NESS fees payable are signed off by stakeholders.
Speaking in Abuja on Monday, February 20, 2017 before the Senate Joint Committee on Finance; Trade and Investment; Gas; Petroleum Upstream; Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions; Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters; and Customs and Excise, NNPC GMD, Dr. Maikanti Baru, said NNPC accumulated the sum due to budgetary appropriation constraints imposed on it by the National Assembly.
Baru, who was represented by the Managing Director, NNPC Capital, Mr. Godwin Okonkwo, at the one-day investigative public hearing on the pre-shipment inspection of export activities in Nigeria at the National Assembly Complex in Abuja, stated that the National Assembly had always budgeted N20 million for NESS fees, adding that NNPC lacked any legal right to remit any amount above the appropriated sum once it was exhausted.