THE Nigerian National Petroleum Company, NNPC, has denied issuing the directive on Nigeria’s new petrol price.
The company said fuel pricing directly falls under the responsibilities of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, NMDPRA.
The spokesperson for the NNPC, Garba Deen Muhammad, said: “The NNPC no longer approves pump price review. That is the work of the midstream and downstream authority. I have no idea. They are the ones that tell you what price regime the government has approved, not NNPC. NNPC has already exited all that situation. We are operating just like MTN now.”
However, there was confusion in the downstream sector, yesterday, as operators unilaterally increased petrol price from N165 to N179 per litre.
In any case, most of the independent marketers were selling between N170 and N200 per litre in complete disobedience to the government directives.
Investigation by Vanguard showed that many oil marketers continue to sell at their preferred prices, depending on locations.
In Lagos, the NNPC, Limited sold at N169 per litre while the major marketers were seen selling at over N170 per litre.
Costs risen significantly – MOMAN
Speaking with Vanguard, the chairman, Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria, MOMAN, Mr. Olumide Adeosun, explained that the cost of operations had increased significantly, due to the ongoing Ukraine war and ban on Russian oil.
According to him, the increasing cost had overstretched the capacity of operators to distribute and market petrol in all parts of the country, saying.
“Operational costs have increased significantly due to higher logistics costs locally and internationally (ongoing conflict in Ukraine and consequential sanctions against Russia).
“The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, NMDPRA and NNPC via the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company, PPMC are doing their best in the circumstances. Given the current economics, it is impossible to supply and sell products at the pump at N165 in the light of the above.”
Impossible to sell at N165 – IPMAN
Similarly, National Operation Controller, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, Mr. Mike Osatuyi, said it was impossible to sustain the previous N165 per litre regime.
He said: “We had tried in the past to sustain supply, but it is no more possible because of rising costs of operations in the downstream sector, especially now that the price of diesel has risen to N800 per litre.”
Total deregulation better – OGSPAN
Also, the National President, Oil and Gas Service Providers Association of Nigeria, OGSPAN, Mazi Colman Obasi, said: “This seems to be an instant or temporary response to problems. From all indications, the complete deregulation of the sector is better.”