Home Economy News Nigeria to suspend taxes on certain food imports to curb rising prices

Nigeria to suspend taxes on certain food imports to curb rising prices

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By MacDonald Dzirutwe

LAGOS (Reuters) – Nigeria plans to suspend taxes on certain food imports including wheat and maize for 150-days, and recommend a retail price to try to bring under control rising prices in Africa’s most populous nation, its agricultural minister said on Monday.

The move is part of the government’s policy to curb food inflation, which has climbed to over 40% year-on-year, and spur growth which has been fragile for almost a decade.

President Bola Tinubu has asked his economic management team to prepare a 2 trillion naira ($1.33 billion) stimulus plan to address concerns about food supplies and pricing and bolster key sectors, the finance minister said last week.

“To ameliorate food inflation in the country caused by affordability and exacerbated by availability, the government has taken a raft of measures to be implemented over the next 180 days,” Agricultural Minister Abubakar Kyari said in a statement posted on X.

He said that the government would import 250,000 metric tons of wheat and 250,000 metric tons of maize in addition to imports by the private sector. The commodities will be imported in their semi-processed state and target supplies to small-scale processors and millers.

Food inflation has soared in the West African nation with insecurity in parts of the country’s food producing regions and poor road network linking farms to markets.

Soaring costs of food staples have deepened the cost of living crisis and added to double-digit inflation which is stuck at nearly 30-year high.

Kyari said the tax waiver would cover food commodities imported through the country’s land and sea borders.

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