The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria has concluded that the country’s oil sector is in a state of confusion owing to the persistent scarcity of petrol nationwide.
IPMAN’s Deputy National President, IPMAN, Zahra Mustapha, made this known during an interview on Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily on Friday.
“The fact of the matter is that we are in a very complex situation because the burden of subsidy that the government is carrying is no more sustainable and the volume that the NNPC for now, being the sole importer of the petroleum product, PMS, has been hit hard, because of that the supply that we receive as the marketers at the loading point is being reduced by over 50 per cent.” Mustapha said.
He stated that since July/August the volume of supply that is now received is less that 50 percent of what they usually get. He said “It doesn’t seem that they (NNPC) are bringing in more, if they are, we will be getting the volume we usually get before.”
“As at today with what is trending in the private depots, the volume we are getting is not enough. With the look of things in the private depots, I assume it is not enough, because if they have it they won’t hoard it.”
The Deputy President of IPMAN said in his statement that the regulatory body would be in the best position to provide answers to the public and give details on why and how the price was adjusted to the new one.
He said that “The high price was not done to only appease the marketers but to ensure that the supply chain is being sustained, because the marketers are also in business and you can’t lift a product, resell it and you’re not making any returns on it, I don’t think anybody will continue to do that.
“There are a lot of confusions in the industry, which the government must come in and address these confusions so that the common man can get the product for the approved price. We cannot buy the product between 220 to 240 naira, transport it for about N50, which is already N300, then expect the marketer to sell to the public for N200 or N190. It is not realisable.”
Mustapha further advised the government to invest in the development of Nigeria’s the local refineries as this problem of scarcity will linger until we have our own refineries up and running. He also condemned the importation of the product by the Nigerian government.
He said, “The whole concept of importation is not sustainable, we need to look for ways on how best we can produce locally.
“If you look at the population growth of Nigeria and the demand from transportation and petroleum needs, with the rate at which it is growing it is not something you can continue to sustain through importation without developing our own local refining capacity to adequately satisfy our needs as a people. Importation itself determines when and how the supply chain is going to be sustained.
“But if we have it locally with all our refineries working and transporting to the 21 depots across the country, I believe it is going to solve the issue of on and off scarcity in the country. If we are not able to start producing locally through our own refineries, I don’t think the issue can be resolved once and for all. This scarcity will continue until when we are able to develop our own refineries to meet the needs of our people.”