FG Budgets N3.36trn For Controversial Fuel Subsidy In H1, 2023
The Federal Government has disclosed that N3.36trillion has been earmarked for fuel subsidy in the first half of 2023.
This was made known by Zainab Ahmed, the Minister of Finance and Budget Planning, on Wednesday in Abuja.
Ahmed said the 2023 budget proposal had a deficit of N10.78trillion.
She stated that local and international borrowing as well as income from privatisation would be used to pay the deficit.
According to the minister, Nigeria’s debt load increased to $102 billion, of which 35% is international and 65% is domestic.
She continued by stating that the country’s current public debt is 23 percent of its gross domestic product.
She said the 2023 budget also factored in 17.16 percent inflation.
She pointed out that the budget was created against the backdrop of global issues like the COVID-19 epidemic and the Russia-Ukraine war, adding that generating revenue had been a significant obstacle to the nation’s progress.
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According to Ahmed, N2.05trillion and N1.58trillion respectively were allotted for education and health, two crucial sectors.
She noted that N2.74 trillion had been set aside for defence and security, N998.9billion for infrastructure, and N756 billion for social development and poverty alleviation.
Ahmed had previously stated that the Nigerian government will stop funding gasoline subsidies in June 2023.
In support of the government’s position, President Muhammadu Buhari stated that the subsidy was no longer feasible given the present fiscal impact.
The government had said an estimated N6.7 trillion in 2023 would be spent on subsidy —if it is not removed — or N3.36 trillion for the first half of the year, if the FG does not go back on its word.
It was earlier reported that the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited spent N2.565 trillion on petrol subsidy payments since the beginning of the year.