In the Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper sent to the Senate on Wednesday, the Federal Government has proposed $78 as the benchmark price for a barrel of crude oil and fixed the exchange rate at N160 per dollar for the 2015 national budget. In a letter that accompanied the documents, it was noted that the MTEF and FSP were prepared against the backdrop of the global economic uncertainties and developments in the domestic environment. According to the presidency, the $78 proposed oil benchmark was to ensure that planned spending was set at prudent and sustainable level and was consistent with government’s overall development set out in the Transformation Agenda of this administration.
The document also set oil production projection for 2015 at 2.2782 million barrel per day. It further explained that the projected oil production figure for 2015 was lower than that of last year due to lack of new investments in the sector due to uncertainties owing to the delay in the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill. However, the MTEF noted that oil production had been estimated at 2.3271 million bpd and 2.4067 million bpd for 2016 and 2017, respectively.