Minister of finance, budget and national planning, Zainab Ahmed, has said the federal government may begin gradual removal of subsidy on petrol from April 2022.
She gave the hint in an interview with ARISE TV on the sidelines of the ongoing World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
Ahmed reiterated that the petrol subsidy was a drain on the economy, as it is revenue that would have gone into the government coffers.
She noted that government has had to borrow to buy petroleum products where there wasn’t enough revenue for government to buy the refined petroleum products.
“So, if we take that out, that is about N3.25 trillion. That is a significant relief, that we do not incur any more than that number that we projected for in 2023,” she said.
The minister pointed out that the decision to retain payments was a collective even though she had made past efforts to have it removed.
“It was a decision that was taken as a collective, recognising the fact that due to the lingering impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and also heightened inflation, that removal of the fuel subsidy at that time, would have increased more burden on the citizen,” Ahmed said.