Lagos, the commercial capital of Nigeria, has overtaken other states in the country to become the most expensive city to live in, according to the latest inflation data.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reported that the inflation rate for Lagos State rose to 25.7% in June, compared to the national average of 22.7%.
This means that the prices of goods and services in Lagos State increased by 25.7% compared to the same period last year.
The NBS also revealed that on a monthly basis, Lagos recorded the highest inflation rate of 2.7% in June, indicating a faster pace of price changes than other states.
The main driver of this increase was the removal of fuel subsidies by the federal government, which led to a sharp rise in the pump price of petrol in Lagos.
Before the removal, Lagos enjoyed a lower fuel price than other states due to its proximity to ports and major depots eliminating some of the transportation costs associated with petrol distribution.
Lagosians also enjoyed the benefits of fuel subsidy as it was widely implemented across the state.
However, with the subsidy removal, Lagosians now pay almost the same as other Nigerians for fuel with fuel prices jumping more than 2 folds from N180/ltr to about N490/ltr
Before June, the most expensive states to live in, in Nigeria were Ondo State, Rivers State and Kogi State, with inflation rates of 25.8%, 25.7% and 25% respectively.
However, these states recorded lower inflation rates in June, as they benefited from the trailing effect of higher inflation rates. Ondo State had an inflation rate of 25.4%, Kogi State had 25.2%, and Rivers State 24.1%
The high cost of fuel has a ripple effect on other sectors of the economy, such as transportation, food, housing and utilities.
As a result, Lagosians are feeling the pinch of inflation more than ever.
The NBS data showed that Lagos had the second-highest food inflation rate of 30.4% in June, trailing Kwara State with 30.8%. Kogi (29.7%), and Ondo (29.2%), also recorded high food inflation rates.