Monday, September 14, 2020

Nigeria’s revenue dropped by 65%, says finance minister

Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, says Nigeria ’ s revenue has dropped by about 65 per cent .

She said this necessitated the decision of the President , Major General Muhammadu Buhari ( retd . ) , to discontinue the payment of petrol subsidy .

Ahmed said this on NTA ’s ‘Good Morning Nigeria ’ programme on Monday which was monitored by our correspondent .

She said if the petrol subsidy returns , it would lead to fuel scarcity because the government would not be able to pay marketers.

The minister stated , “ What we have been doing is not sustainable . If we bring back fuel subsidy , we will fail because we will not be able to pay it and the problem of disputes with marketers will come back , then we will have queues again . We just cannot afford it and therefore this deregulation must be made to work .

“ We appeal to Nigerians to understand that in the past when subsidy was done , we could afford to do it but right now , we cannot pay. Remember that right now our revenue has gone down by about 65 per cent . So , it is not business as usual . We cannot do what we used to do anymore. ”

She said Nigeria is currently facing difficult times like many other countries around the world .

The minister stated that the price of petrol would henceforth be determined by the price of crude oil .

When asked if subsidy would return if the price of crude oil bounces back to how it was in previous years , Ahmed said it was unlikely that would happen .

She, however , said the decision remains that subsidy would not return .

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