Nigeria’s total debt rose slightly by 4.5 percent to N22.7 trillion in the first quarter of 2018, the country’s debt management office (DMO) has said.

In a statement issued on the DMO’s website on Wednesday, it said the increase was largely due to a growth in the domestic debts of states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The proceeds from the $2.5 billion Euro bond issued in February 2018 which were used to redeem maturing domestic debt also led to the increase in total public debt stock.

“The debt figures show that the implementation of the debt management strategy, which entails an increase in the external debt stock through new external borrowing and the substitution of high cost domestic debt with low cost external debt, is achieving the desired results in several areas,” the statement read.

The DMO also said a total of N643.6 billion was spent on servicing the nation’s domestic debt.

It said N239.8 billion was spent on domestic debt servicing in January, N144 billion in February and N259.7 billion in March.

Breaking it down further, it said N223.4 billion was interest accruing on Nigeria Treasury Bills/Bonds (NTBs), while N411.7 billion was interest on federal government bonds.

It also said the interest on the federal government of Nigeria savings bond was N241.8 million while Sukuk bonds stood at N8.167 billion.

A sum of N279.6 billion of NTBs was redeemed in Q1 2018, the DMO said.

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