The Federal Government has said it will provide a N5,000 monthly grant to 30-40 million underprivileged Nigerians in a bid to cushion the effect of the impending fuel subsidy removal.
Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, disclosed this at the launch of the World Bank Nigeria Development Update (NDU) on Tuesday.
The Federal Government had earlier announced that it would remove petrol subsidy in July 2022.
According to Ahmed, the number of targeted Nigerians for this palliative would depend on the resources available after the removal of the fuel subsidy.
She said: “The subsidies regime in the [oil] sector remains unsustainable and economically disingenuous.
“Ahead of the target date of mid-2022 for the complete elimination of fuel subsidies, we are working with our partners on measures to cushion potential negative impact of the removal of the subsidies on the most vulnerable at the bottom 40% of the population.
“One of such measures would be to institute a monthly transport subsidy in the form of cash transfer of N5,000 to between 30 – 40 million deserving Nigerians.
“We are very optimistic that the recent developments in the oil sector, such as the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, hopefully, the full reactivation of the 4 public refineries in the country, and the completion and coming on stream of the 3 private refineries under construction in 2022, would significantly boost contribution from the sector to our economic growth efforts.”
The World Bank in the development update had said the poorest 40 per cent in Nigeria consume less than three per cent of the total PMS in the country, highlighting that the rich were benefiting more from the subsidies.