Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, LCCI, has described fuel subsidy which the World Bank said cost Nigeria N731 billion in 2018, as the biggest fiscal burdenthe nation’s economy is currently facing.
LCCI, which response was based on the World Bank report, released on Monday in Abuja focused on key developments in Nigeria’s economy in 2018, added among other things that the Excess Crude Account, ECA, was virtually depleted during the period.The bank had also stated in another report that petrol subsidy deductions for 2017 full year was N107.3 billion, but its current report showed that N731 billion was spent in 2018 alone.
It had stated that most of the petrol volumes Nigeria spent money to subsidize in 2018 were inflated as daily consumption rose to 54 million litres per day (ml/d) from 40ml/d in 2017, apparently due partly to out-smuggling.
The DG, LCCI, Mr. Muda Yusuf has said that Perhaps the biggest fiscal burden on the economy today is the petroleum subsidy regime. It is a big hole in the finances of government. It puts tremendous pressure on the foreign reserves and the foreign exchange market, just as it exerts immense stress on the nation’s treasury.