Subsidy removal: FG to disburse $800m World Bank fund for palliatives

THE Federal Government has secured $800 million from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank), as part of its post-subsidy palliative plans.

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, disclosed this to journalists after the federal executive council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, April 5.

Ahmed said the $800 million from the World Bank formed the first tranche of palliatives and will be disbursed to 10 million households considered to be most vulnerable.

“There is a provision in the Petroleum Industry Act that says 18 months after the effectiveness of the PIA that all petroleum products must be deregulated. That 18 month takes us to June 2023,” she said.

    “Also, when we were working on the 2023 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and the Appropriation Act, we made that provision to enable us to exit fuel subsidy by June 2023.

    “We are on course, we are having different stakeholder engagements, we’ve secured some funding from the World Bank, that is the first tranche of palliatives that will enable us to give cash transfers to the most vulnerable in our society that have now been registered in a national register,” she added.

    It will be recalled that in 2022, the minister, while addressing the House of Representatives, said that the government will stop subsidy payments in June 2023.

    However, she noted that the Federal Government must raise more resources to enable it do more than cash transfers.

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