The National Economic Council (NEC) has agreed that the timing for the removal of subsidy should not be now but that all of the preparatory works should continue in consultation with the states and other key stakeholders, including representatives of the incoming administration.
Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, disclosed this on Thursday while briefing State House correspondents after the council meeting chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
She said “council agreed that the fuel subsidy must be removed earlier rather than later because it is not sustainable. We cannot afford it anymore. We have to do it in such a way that the impact of the subsidy is as much as possible, mitigated on the lives of ordinary Nigerians.
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“So, we will be working together with representatives of the state, we will have a plan that we will start working on putting the building blocks towards the eventual removal of the fuel subsidy.
“If I May remind the forum, that the budget for 2023 has provision for subsidy only up to June 2023 and also the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) has a provision that requires that all petroleum products must be deregulated 18 months after the effective date of the PMs removal and that period is also up to June 2023.”