The senior special assistant to the president on Niger Delta Affairs, Mr. Ita Enang has revealed that the federal government spent N1.5 trillion on fuel subsidy in 2019.
The revelation was contained in a communiqué issued after a consultative meeting between a federal government team led by the office of the senior special assistant to the president on Niger Delta Affairs and the Association of Artisanal Local Refineries Operators in Nigeria.
Enang disclosed that the amount was incurred as subsidy because the commodity was imported at points where the landing cost were higher than the regulated price of the commodity in Nigeria.
He with the current crash in the prices of crude oil in the international market, it would be difficult for the government to sustain the subsidy regime.
“Whereas the price of crude oil has drastically dropped to the twenties dollar per barrel band and there will be great cost differentials if we still ship very cheap crude abroad, pay export shipping cost and incidentals, get them refined abroad and ship back to Nigeria paying another shipping and landing, agencies and incidental cost, including subsidies.
“Whereas with the crashed cheap price of crude oil, Nigeria will not have enough revenue from crude sales or any batter arrangement to sustain the subsidy regime currently operating.
“Whereas the import of refined petroleum products, indeed PMS in particular has more cost element of marine transportation, Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) charge for export/import handling, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) charges, and indeed other charges relating to in and maritime transportation,” he said.