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Nigerian budget slashed by slumping oil prices; minister points to incentive to diversify

ABUJA, Nigeria – Nigeria’s finance minister presented a 2015 budget of $23 billion, slashed by nearly $3 billion to accommodate slumping oil prices.

Minister Ngozi Ikonjo-Iweala said she expects government revenue of $19.7 billion off growth of 5.5 per cent next year, down from an earlier projection of 6.35 per cent.

She told parliament Wednesday that she has tried to make up for a drop in oil prices from $78 to $65 a barrel by raising non-oil revenue. While income from agriculture of other industries has grown, the government depends on oil for about 80 per cent of its revenue.

The naira currency slid to nearly 190 to the dollar Friday after an 8 per cent devaluation earlier in December.