The increase in the bridging allowance to transporters from N6.20 to N7.20 per litre will not result in upward review of petrol pump price, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has said.
Speaking on the rumoured planned increase of the product in Abuja yesterday, Chief Operating Officer (COO) in charge of Downstream Operations of the corporation, Mr. Henry Ikem-Obih, said there was no plan by the government or any of its agencies to review the pump price of petrol above N145 per litre.
He said that the rise in the bridging cost was achieved after an adjustment was made in the ‘lightering expenses’ from N4.00 to N3.00 per litre and the difference transferred to compensate for the cost of bridging within the same template.
Besides, Ikem-Obih yesterday disclosed that the NNPC has 1.3 billion litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) in storage, which is enough to serve the country in the next 36 days.He said: “What this means is that even if we stop importation or refining of petrol right now, we have enough products to provide for the need of every Nigerian for 36 days.”
Ikem-Obih noted that the supply availability was bolstered with the production of petrol from the three refineries located in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna.He added: “There is absolutely no risk of shortage in supply as we also continue to import to support the production from the refineries. We have informed the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to enforce the prevailing N145 per litre price regime and also ensure that every service station that has fuel is selling to the public.”
The COO reiterated the readiness of the NNPC management to sustain the existing cordial relationship between the corporation and the leadership of the downstream industry unions and other stakeholders.
He said the DPR, which is the regulatory arm of the industry, had been alerted to sanction fuel station owners who engage in hoarding or charge consumers in excess of the approved pump price.
Meanwhile, Group General Manager, Public Affairs, Ndu Ughammadu, had explained that the N1.0 increase in transporters’ allowance would be absorbed in the existing pricing template.
He stated: “NNPC wishes to assure consumers of premium motor spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol, that the review of bridging cost would not lead to increase in the price of the product.”
Also, Head, Programmes and Membership, Institute of Directors’ Centre for Corporate Governance, Nerus Ekezie, said strike and increase in the price of PMS would have disastrous effects on the already burdened economy and therefore call on the Federal Government to be proactive in creating a conducive environment to business in Nigeria.