The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) promised to cancel the licenses of petrol marketers who were hoarding the product in their depots and selling it beyond the set price caps.
Speaking in Abuja, Mr. Farouk Ahmed, Chief Executive Officer of the NMDPRA, disclosed that numerous depots had recently been closed down for selling goods beyond the set pricing limits.
He emphasized that as of yesterday, the country still had at least 30 days’ worth of supplies. He added that the even distribution of petroleum products, particularly from the waterways to the depots through truck-ins to the retail stations, had been impacted by the global crisis brought on by the Russian and Ukrainian wars as well as the fluctuation in the value of the naira.
To overcome the distribution constraints, Ahmed said that numerous meetings had been held with oil marketing firms, independent marketers, transporters, suppliers, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC), as well as other interested parties.
The market is currently not deregulated. So, in terms of gasoline, we are still in a restricted system, Ahmed continued.
He said that due to the high cost of diesel, the primary means of carrying other goods inside the nation, President Muhammadu Buhari has granted an additional N10 for transporters to offset the transportation costs.
The increase in the bunkers’ freight rate from between $16,000 and $19,000 per day to approximately $35,000 to $40,000 per day inside Lagos and even more to Calabar, he noted, had been one of the distribution system’s limitations.
According to the CEO of the NMDPRA, the organization took action not to necessarily destabilize the market but to strengthen it because, as a responsible regulator, it was worried about the plight of voiceless innocent Nigerians.