PPPRA board seeks to review petrol price, others

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A fuel station attendant dispenses kerosene at a Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) mega petrol station in Abuja January 23, 2015. The NNPC commenced sale of kerosene cooking fuel, which a majority of Nigerians depend on for cooking, at a reduced pump price of $0.27 per litre nationwide at all NNPC outlets. REUTERS/ Afolabi Sotunde (NIGERIA - Tags: ENERGY BUSINESS) - RTR4MO8Q

Following the myriad of suggestions favouring adjustment in the price of petrol, the board of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), the agency responsible for fixing fuel price, will meet on Thursday to consider among other issues, the review of the petroleum product pricing template.

Reliable sources in the agency told Daily Trust that PPPRA will come up with the latest template sooner than later which could see petrol price rise or fall.

The template which was last updated on May 23, 2016, pegged the price of petrol between N135 and N145 per litre but many developments have taken place in the oil and foreign exchange (FX) markets since then.

Daily Trust learnt that the board, which was formally inaugurated in November, had only met twice. It did not review the template at past meetings because the PPPRA management was yet to brief it on the matter. But, one of the main issues on the agenda during Thursday’s meeting is the review of the template, our sources said. Mr. Gbenga Oshinowo, who is a member of the PPPRA board and the Director General of the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) confirmed the meeting.

“The matter (pricing template review) has been raised and we are meeting on Thursday this week. By the time we meet, it will be clear as to which direction to go,” he said.

Daily Trust reports that PPPRA has come under sharp criticisms lately for “unnecessary charges” that the agency inputs in the pricing template which made the price of petrol N145 per litre.

For instance, a House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on the Review of Pump Price of Petrol on Monday said the 84kobo port charge and the 30kobo administration charge collected by the agency were fraudulent.

The legislators noted that, for instance, the 30 kobo “administrative charge”, was provided for in the 2016 budget but Nigerians still paid it. They insisted that if the unnecessary costs were removed, Nigerians would not have to pay more than N70 per litre.

Meanwhile, oil workers  – comprising the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) have said they would not accept another increase in petrol price. PENGASSAN in a submission it made to the House Committee on petrol price template review said it believed that this is not the right time to review the template due to the current economic situation.

“We also call on government to reduce the sundry charges created by some bodies controlled by government – for instance NPA charges, NIMASA charges, storage charges – as this will go a long way to push down the landing cost,” it said.

 

 

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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