Petroleum products gulp Nigeria’s N12trn in 2023 — NBS


By Abiodun OBA


Importation of petroleum products, including premium motor spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol, cost Nigeria approximately N12 trillion in 2023.

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its Foreign Trade Statistics for the Fourth Quarter of 2023 reported that the figure marks an 18.68% increase compared to the N10 trillion spent on fuel imports in 2022.

Specifically, the NBS data revealed that the country spent N7.5 trillion on PMS imports in 2023, representing a slight decrease of 2.51% compared to the N7.7 trillion spent on fuel imports in 2022.

Petroleum product imports accounted for about 33% of total imports, amounting to approximately N36 trillion in 2023, with PMS imports comprising about 21% of total imports.

Breaking down the quarterly expenditure on petroleum products imports, the NBS reported that Nigeria spent approximately N3.3 trillion, N3.4 trillion, N2.2 trillion, and about N3 trillion on petrol imports in the first, second, third, and fourth quarters of 2023, respectively.

Comparatively, in the first, second, third, and fourth quarters of 2022, the country spent N3.5 trillion, N2.4 trillion, N2.3 trillion, and N1.9 trillion on fuel imports, respectively.

In the fourth quarter of 2023, PMS imports accounted for about 13% of total imports, ranking as the second most imported commodity after motorised tanks and other armoured fighting vehicles, which cost the country N5.1 trillion to import.

Gas oil ranked third, with the country spending N1.2 trillion on its imports, while aviation fuel (kerosene) imports amounted to N239 billion, emerging as the fourth most imported commodity.

Other major commodities imported in the fourth quarter included components of gas turbines, costing N117 billion, and lubricating oils, amounting to N47 billion.

“In the fourth quarter of 2023, total imports increased by 56.04 per cent compared to the value recorded in the third quarter of 2023 (N9.041 trillion) and by 163.08 per cent when compared to the value recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2022 (N5.363 trillion).

“In terms of Imports (Cost, Insurance and Freight), the top five trading partners were Singapore with goods valued at N5.092 trillion or 36.09 per cent, China with N2.061 trillion or 14.61 per cent, Belgium with N1.141 trillion or 8.09 per cent, India with N908.59 billion or 6.44 per cent and The United States of America with goods valued at N512.99 billion or 3.64 per cent.

The values of imports from the top five countries amounted to N9.716 trillion, representing a share of 68.86 per cent of total imports,” The NBS reported.

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