- Fuel Queues Return to Lagos, NNPC Allays Scarcity Fear
There was fear of a fresh round of fuel scarcity on Thursday as many filling stations in parts of Lagos and Ogun states did not sell Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known as petrol, to motorists as they had run out of the product.
Marketers have in recent months been relying on supply from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, which is now responsible for about 90 per cent of the importation of the product and sells to marketers at N131 per litre.
The NNPC, in its latest monthly report, said it remained the major importer of petroleum products, especially the PMS, in spite of liberalisation of petroleum products and government’s intervention meant to ease the marketers’ access to foreign exchange.
In the past, marketers were importing 70 per cent of the products, while the NNPC was bringing in the balance, being the supplier of last resort.
A source, who is an executive in a Lagos-based oil marketing company, told one of our correspondents, “There have been supply issues in recent days as the supply from the NNPC could not meet the demand from marketers. Most of the marketers are not importing the product largely because of foreign exchange problems.
“Everybody has been rationing the little supply they are getting from the NNPC. Now, there are queues in some filling stations. The government should make forex available for the marketers to import the product.”
Motorists queued for petrol at the few filling stations that dispensed the product on Thursday, while some independent oil marketers refused to sell petrol to consumers.
Many motorists, who were heading for their places of work and trade, were caught unawares by the sudden decision of many of the filling stations not to sell the product, while the few ones that dispensed the PMS did so from one or two pumps.
However, the NNPC said the pockets of fuel queues in Lagos and some other parts of the country would soon disappear as it had up to 36-day sufficiency of the PMS.
It stated that mild queues were sighted in parts of Abuja on Wednesday, but noted that the queues had disappeared by Thursday.
The Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, NNPC, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, told one of our correspondents that the queues were largely due to panic-buying.
He said, “There is no cause for alarm and nothing like petrol price increase. The group managing director of the NNPC addressed some executives today where he said the country had 36-day sufficiency. If you have up to 36 days’ sufficiency, then what’s the need for such panic?”
When asked why some independent marketers were not dispensing petrol, he replied, “They have been lifting from us and all our depots are on. The independent and major marketers are lifting from us. The key issue is to look at the level of product sufficiency that a country has and we are making sure that Nigeria is wet with products.
“Even yesterday (Wednesday), some areas in Abuja experienced pockets of queues; but today, all the queues have disappeared. So, the Lagos queues or wherever you find queues in Nigeria will disappear too, because we have enough product to go round.
“The queues are mainly because consumers tend to react to any rumour; if some marketers say they are not going to do this or that, people will start rushing. But we want to assure Nigerians that there is no cause for alarm.”
NNPC Supplies 1.44 Billion Litres of Petrol in January 2021
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) supplied a total of 1.44 billion litres of Premium Motor Spirit popularly known as petrol in January 2021.
The corporation disclosed in its latest Monthly Financial and Operations Report (MFOR) for the month of January.
NNPC said the 1.44 billion litres translate to 46.30 million litres per day.
Also, a total of 223.55Billion Cubic Feet (BCF) of natural gas was produced in the month of January 2021, translating to an average daily production of 7,220.22 Million Standard Cubic Feet per Day (mmscfd).
The 223.55BCF gas production figure also represents a 4.79% increase over output in December 2020.
Also, the daily average natural gas supply to gas power plants increased by 2.38 percent to 836mmscfd, equivalent to power generation of 3,415MW.
For the period of January 2020 to January 2021, a total of 2,973.01BCF of gas was produced representing an average daily production of 7,585.78 mmscfd during the period.
Period-to-date Production from Joint Ventures (JVs), Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) and Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) contributed about 65.20%, 19.97 percent and 14.83 percent respectively to the total national gas production.
Out of the total gas output in January 2021, a total of 149.24BCF of gas was commercialized consisting of 44.29BCF and 104.95BCF for the domestic and export markets respectively.
NNPC Says Pipeline Vandalism Decrease by 37.21 Percent in January 2021
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said vandalisation of pipelines across the country reduced by 37.21 percent in the month of January 2021.
This was disclosed in the January 2021 edition of the NNPC Monthly Financial and Operations Report (MFOR).
The report noted that 27 pipeline points were vandalised in January 2021, down from 43 points posted in December 2020.
It also stated that the Mosimi Area accounted for 74 percent of the total vandalised points in Janauray while Kaduna Area and Port Harcourt accounted for the remaining 22 percent and 4 percent respectively.
NNPC said it will continue to engage local communities and other stakeholders to reduce and eventually eliminate the pipeline vandalism menace.
Nigeria’s Food Inflation Hits 22.95 Percent in March 2021
Food inflation in Africa’s largest economy Nigeria rose by 22.95 percent in March 2021, the latest report from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has shown.
Food Index increased at a faster pace when compared to 21.70 percent filed in February 2021.
Increases were recorded in Bread and cereals, Potatoes, yam and other tubers, Meat, Vegetable, Fish, Oils and fats and fruits.
On a monthly basis, the food sub-index grew by 1.90 percent in March 2021. An increase of 0.01 percent points from 1.89 percent recorded in February 2021.
Analysing a more stable inflation trend, the twelve-month ended March 2021, showed the food index averaged 17.93 percent in the last twelve months, representing an increase of 0.68 percent when compared to 17.25 percent recorded in February 2021.
Insecurities amid wide foreign exchange rates and several other bottlenecks that impeded free inflow of imported goods were responsible for the surged in prices of goods and services in March, according to the report.
The Central Bank of Nigeria-led monetary policy committee had attributed the increase in prices to scarcity created by the intermittent clash between herdsmen and farmers across the nation.
However, other factors like unclear economic policies, increased in electricity tariffs, duties, subsidy removal and weak fiscal buffer to moderate the negative effect of COVID-19 on the economy continue to weigh and drag on new investment and expansion of local production despite the Federal Government aggressive call for improvement in domestic production.
Nigeria’s headline inflation rose by 18.17 percent year-on-year in the month under review.
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