Sunday, 14 April 2019

We have no plan to remove subsidy. Finance minister said

The minister of finance clarified its
The Minister of Finance, Mrs . Zainab
Ahmed , said this on Sunday at the
briefing by the Nigerian delegation on
the outcome of their meetings with
investors and institutions at the IMF /
World Bank meetings in Washington
DC.
Ahmed spoke in reaction to IMF ’s
advice to federal government to
remove fuel subsidy, which might have
led to panic buying in the country .
“ There is no imminent plan to remove
subsidy. IMF said that fuel subsidy is
better removed so that we can use the
resources for other important sectors .
“ In principle, It’ s a good suggestion, but
in Nigeria we don’ t have any plans to
remove fuel subsidy at this time
because we have not yet designed
buffers that will enable us remove the
subsidy and provide cushions for our
people.
“ So there is no plan to remove fuel
subsidy.
“ We will be working with various
groups to find an alternative if we have
to remove it . We are not yet at the
point of removing fuel subsidy yet, ” she
said.
Ahmed described the outing in
Washington DC as a successful one ,
which provided Nigeria with the
opportunity to review developments in
the global economy and proffer
potential solutions.
She said that the general advice for
Nigeria is to prioritise cost - effective
policies that would increase resilience
to shocks , boost productivity and raise
incomes of the bottom 40 per cent of
the population .
“ In my capacity as representative of 23
African countries, I addressed the IMFC
and issued a statement calling for
normalisation of trade relations among
the contending parties and called for
concerted efforts to supporting
multilaterism and avoid protectionist
sentiments.
“ At the G- 24 meeting, I drew the
attention of the World Bank to some of
the challenges we face in implementing
our portfolio like the implementation
of the new environmental and social
safeguards framework which tends to
slow down implementation of our
infrastructure projects .
“ My engagement at the IMFC also
focused on the global policy agenda .
“ Governors underscored the
importance of strengthening market
competition, encouraging innovation,
tackling weak governance and
corruption and meeting the SDGs.
“ Governors underlined the importance
of strengthening international
coordination and cooperation to tackle
shared challenges , given the potentially
damaging effects of trade tensions on
global economic developments , and
impact of natural disasters on
developing countries ,” she said.

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