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HomeTop NewsNigeria says June timing for removal of petrol subsidy 'is problematic'

Nigeria says June timing for removal of petrol subsidy ‘is problematic’

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By Oludare Mayowa

Nigeria on Monday said consultation is ongoing concerning the removal of fuel subsidy via the deregulation of the downstream sector of the petroleum sector, according to the Minister of Finance and Budget, Zainab Ahmed.

Ahmed said the government may shift the initial June deadline for the removal of subsidy because of the possible impact on the generality of the people in the face of rising inflation.

Ahmed, while interacting with the President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan in Abuja, said that the Federal Government is still in consultation with various stakeholders on the need to end fuel subsidy.

The Honourable Minister said that the Federal Government initially in compliance with the provision of Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) to deregulate all petroleum products, made provisions for fuel subsidy from January-June 2022. This implies that, there was no provisions for subsidy from July, 2022.
The provision was made sequel to the passage of the Petroleum Industry Act which indicated that all petroleum products would be deregulated.

“Sequel to the passage of the PIA, we went back to amend the fiscal framework to incorporate the provisions to deregulate the sector.

“However, after the budget was passed, we had consultations with a number of stakeholders and it became clear that the timing was problematic.
“We are still discussing and if it means going back to the National Assembly to move the date forward and further amend the budget to accommodate further subsidy payment.
“In real terms, there is still heightened inflation, the removal of subsidy may further worsen the situation and impose more difficulties on the citizenry.
“ President Muhammadu Buhari, does not want to do that. What we are now doing is to continue with the ongoing discussions and consultations in terms of putting in place a number of measures.

“One of these include the timelines for roll out of the refining capacities of the existing refineries and the new ones which would reduce quantum of products that would be imported into the country,” Ahmed.

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