As the scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) continues to bite hard on Nigerians, officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) have revealed that the country loses about N800-N900million daily, which cumulatively has reached N85.5billion in just three months.
Director of Press in the ministry of Petroleum Resources Idang Alibi in a statement on Thursday night, clarified the minister’s submission made to the joint committee of the National Assembly on Petroleum Downstream.
According to the statement, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, had incurred a cumulative loss of N85.5 billion in importing petrol and selling at the current retail price of N145 per litre, since October 2017.
According to him, the landing cost of PMS which was N133.28 per litre in 2016, is now N171 per litre and this has resulted into stoppage of importation of the product by independent marketers. This, he said had made the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to be the 100 per cent importer of the product.
On plans by the Federal Government to hike the price of petrol a second time, Alibi denied the reports saying; “The Ministry of Petroleum Resources would like to categorically state that the Honourable Minister never mentioned nor insinuated the need or plans by the Federal Government to increase the current pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS).”
He urged the public and indeed stakeholders in the oil and gas sector to disregard any such report of a price increase. Idang also quoted in the statement as saying it was a shame that Nigeria could still not refine its crude.
“In what I might call an emergency before the work that we are doing on the refineries that would be finished sometime in 2019, I want to remind that over two years we haven’t had queues. We are spending night and day to find solutions to nip this in the bud.
“Ultimately what this country needs is to have its refineries working and I have said that it is shameful that after 30, 40 years of activities in the downstream, cannot produce sufficient [petroleum products]. I have said nobody sells crude in its form in the world and we have to have the technical capacity to do this,” the statement quoted Kachikwu as saying.
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