Nigeria is to deregulate its domestic fuel market on 1 November in an attempt to contain costs and increase competition and efficiency in the sub-sector. The federal government can no longer sustain the huge subsidies that it pays out for gasoline and other petroleum products, which came to N640 billion last year alone.

The move, which was announced in March, has met with protests from labour unions and civil society groups, who are afraid that deregulation will force a hike in the price of petrol products on the local market with negative implications for poor Nigerians in particular. The last price rise was in 2007, a few months after president Umaru Yar