Fuel Subsidy Will Be Removed In July 2022 – Federal Govt

Mrs Zainab Ahmed

For the second time in two days, the federal government has said subsidy on premium motor spirit (PMS), popularly known as petrol, will remain till July next year when Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) finally takes effect.

The minister of finance, budget and national planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, who said on Monday the subsidy will go next year, repeated it yesterday, at a press conference to mark the end of this year’s second-day Nigerian Economic Summit (NES) in Abuja.

Also, the director-general of the Debt Management Office (DMO) Ms Patience Oniha said the federal government is yet to decide whether to go ahead to borrow the balance of $2.3 billion external loan under the 2021 approved budget. Out of the total $6 billion external borrowing plan in the budget, the government had borrowed $4 billion from the external market.

Oniha said, “We have issued N1.5trillion. There will be a lot more. We are waiting for the approval of the National Assembly.” She said there are still a lot more promissory notes waiting for the National Assembly for issuance. Oniha said the government increased the debt benchmark to 40 per cent to be on a safer side.

Meanwhile, Africa Tax and Legal Services Leader at PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Nigeria, Taiwo Oyedele, has urged the federal government to reduce the number of taxes to 10 from the federal through the states to the local government areas. He said the government would raise more money from a few taxes if the tax collection is effectively done to avoid loss of tax revenues to middlemen who are non-state actors.

“We have to harmonise multiple taxes and multiplicity of collection agencies. It does not make sense to me. As of today, less than 10 taxes account for about 98 percent of tax revenue across all the levels of government.

we have over 100 taxes,” he stated.

He disagreed with the government on the position that 60 agencies should be generating revenues, saying they should be providing services. “Let tax authorities generate revenue.”

He also said Nigeria needs to move away from fixation in owning assets.

Oyedele said Nigeria needs a national integrated revenue, spending and debt management strategy.


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