- Price of Cooking Gas Soars as Pirates Attack LPG Vessel
The average price for the refilling of a five kilogramme (kg) cylinder of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) or Cooking Gas, has increased by 5.48 per cent month on month to N2,708.38 in February 2017 from N2,567.56 in January 2017, and 45.59 per cent year-on-year.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), which made the disclosure in its monthly LPG price watch, listed states with the highest average price for the refilling a 5kg-cylinder of cooking gas to include Edo N3,030; Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Zamfara, Rivers and Kebbi, N3,000; and Delta, N2,984.62.
The development undermines Federal Government’s efforts to boost domestic gas utilisation, particularly per capita LPG consumption, reputed as among the lowest, despite holding the seventh largest gas reserves, globally.
The immediate consequence of this is that more households would resort to the felling of trees as well as the use of other alternatives like coal and kerosene with attendant adverse environment implications.
But, operators in the sector attributed the high cost of the commodity to pirate attack of a Lagos-bound LPG vessel.Hitherto, the price of refilling a 5kg gas cylinder had for a very long time been between N1,200 and N1,500, but price had shot up to between N2,500 and N3,000.
A restaurant operator, who relies on cooking gas for her daily business, Mrs. Loretta Okechukwu, said the price of the product was outrageous, considering the current situation in the country.
She said: “I used to buy the 12.5kg of gas for N3,000, and it lasts for three weeks or even up to one month. In the last three years, the price had been stable, cheaper and easier to get than kerosene.
“But, since the beginning of this year, the price has refused to come down. It has continued to increase. The Federal Government really has to do something about it.”She said it was unfortunate that prices of goods kept increasing on a daily basis and consumers have to bear the brunt.
The NBS data listed states with the lowest average price for the refilling of a 5kg gas cylinder to include Osun N2,393.75; Oyo N2,376.47; and Ondo N2,372.73.However, the Bureau disclosed that the average price for the refilling of a 12.5kg gas cylinder decreased by 2.95 per cent month-on-month to N5,345.87 in February 2017 from N5,508.16 in January 2017, and 45.49 per cent year-on-year.
It said: “States with the highest average price for the refilling of a 12.5kg cylinder for cooking gas were Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Edo, Kebbi, Rivers Yobe, N6,000.00; Delta, N5,923.08 and Borno, 5,833.33.
“States with the lowest average price for the refilling of a 12.5kg cylinder for cooking gas were Lagos, N4,797.22; Ogun, N4,777.28, and Oyo, N4,322.22.”The Bureau also revealed that Borno recorded the highest average cooking gas price for refilling 5kg cylinder in the North East Region for February, while Bauchi, Gombe and Taraba states recorded the least average price.
It added that Kebbi and Zamfara states recorded the highest average cooking gas price for refilling 5kg cylinder in the North West region while Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano and Katsina states recorded the least average price.
“Yobe recorded the highest average cooking gas price for refilling 12kg cylinder in the North East Region while Adamawa, Bauchi, Gombe and Taraba states recorded the least.
Kebi State recorded the highest average cooking gas price for refilling 12.5kg cylinder in the North West Region and Kano State the least.
“Anambra State recorded the highest average cooking gas price for refilling 12.5kg cylinder in the South East region while Imo State recorded the least average price.
“Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Edo and Rivers State record the highest average cooking gas price for refilling 12.5kg cylinder in the South South region while Bayelsa State recorded the least average price,” it added.
President of the Nigerian LPG Association, (NLPGA), Adedayo Adeshina, attributed the rise in price of cooking gas to pirate’s attack on LPG vessels on its way to Lagos, which delayed discharge of the product, and adding that the issue has been resolved.
Adeshina said the vessel owner had requested for more insurance from the Navy and there is already free flow of product.He said that consumers should expect a stable price in the price, noting that it may take a while to establish stability onece there is any disruption in activities.
Amazon To Open African Headquarters In South Africa
US retail giant, Amazon has announced that it would be opening its first African office in South Africa with a real estate investment of over R4 billion. This announcement is coming a week after Twitter choose to open its first African office in Ghana.
Authorities in Cape Town noted that Amazon would be occupying a new development in River Club, a prime section of the city. This new development will create 5,239 jobs in the construction phase alone. Along with 19,000 indirect and induced jobs.
The 15-hectare parcel of land will cost R4 billion and include two precincts. Authorities said the first precinct of 60,000sqm would occupy different layers of development, while the second section of 70,000 will hold Amazon headquarters in Africa.
“US retail giant, Amazon, will be the anchor tenant, opening a base of operations on the African continent. The development is envisaged to take place in phases, with construction set to take place over three to five years.
It is clear that this development offers many economic, social, and environmental benefits for the area. We are committed to driving investment to revitalize the economy, which is slowly recovering following the impact of Covid-19.” This was affirmed by Cape town city officials.
Earlier last week, Techcrunch had reported that Amazon announced the opening of Amazon Salon, the retailer’s first hair salon and a place where Amazon aims to test new technologies with the general public.
Amazon has had its web engineering giant AWS in South Africa for years, but its main e-commerce services have not been available anywhere on the continent.
This announcement came a week after Twitter announced the decision to set up its first African office and headquarters in Accra Ghana. Twitter claimed that Ghana’s democratic and economic strides made the West African country a highly competitive destination over Nigeria and other countries.
It was unclear whether Amazon considered Nigeria and similar parameters as Twitter while deciding its African base.
Dangote Commits $700M To Sugar Production In Support of Backward Integration Policy
The management of Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc has said it is committing over $700m to its sugar projects to support the Backward Integration Policy of the Federal Government to make Nigeria self-sufficient in sugar production.
According to a statement issued on Sunday by Dangote Industries Limited, the company disclosed this to visiting members of the Nasarawa House of Assembly on Friday.
The company noted that Nigeria was one of sub-Saharan Africa’s largest importers of sugar, second only to South Africa with an annual import of over $337m.
The Dangote Sugar management however assured the lawmakers that with the completion of its sugar projects in Nasarawa and Adamawa under the BIP, the nation would be saved more than half of the forex expended on sugar imports annually.
It added that the investment would also lift its people as other people-oriented infrastructures would come with the sugar projects.
The state lawmakers commended the Dangote Group for the choice of the state for the project and the accelerated pace with which the project was being executed, despite occasional delays arising from communal disagreements.
General Manager for the BIP, Dangote Sugar, John Beverley said when the factory was fully operational, it would have the capacity to crush 12,000 tons of cane per day, while 90MW power would be generated for both the company’s use and host communities.
He also disclosed that some 500km roads in all would be constructed to ease transportation within the vicinity. He solicited the support of the lawmakers in controlling the menace of land encroachment by settlers and itinerant farmers.
The Speaker of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Ibrahim Abdullah, and his team members, who were conducted around the company’s 78,000 hectares BIP in Tunga Awe Local Government Area commended the company for the project.
Abdullah noted that it would not only open up opportunities in the state but in Africa as a whole, and said the lawmakers were ready to partner and support the company towards the realisation of the sugar project through the relevant legislation.
When phase II of the project is completed, according to the company, it will make it the largest sugar refining plant in Africa.
French Trade Advisors pledge Massive Investment In Lagos Free Zone
The Conseillers du Commerce Exterieur (French Foreign Trade Advisors) has expressed readiness to invest massively in the Lagos Free Zone (LFZ) being developed by the Tolaram Group as they endorsed the zone as the ideal industrial destination for French businesses in Nigeria.
This was made known on Thursday, April 15, 2021, during a visit to the Lagos Free Zone. The delegation led by the Ambassador of France to Nigeria, His Excellency Jerome Pasquier accompanied by his Economic Advisor, the Consulate General of France in Lagos and the Conseillers du Commerce Exterieur comprising of CEOs of several French businesses in Nigeria.
Speaking during the visit, the Ambassador of France in Nigeria, His Excellency Jerome Pasquier explained that the aim of the visit of the Conseillers du Commerce Exterieur to Lagos Free Zone (LFZ) was to discover the opportunities in the Lagos Free Zone and the Lekki Port project, which is expected to have a huge positive impact on businesses in Nigeria.
Pasquier commended Tolaram Group, the promoter of the zone, for the foresight of integration of Lekki Port into the master plan of the Lagos Free Zone (LFZ), which would serve as the gateway for import and export from the zone thereby giving businesses in the zone a competitive edge.
The Ambassador also commended the Lagos Free Zone (LFZ) for its Master Plan for the zone which includes world-class infrastructure that is in line with its vision to be the preferred industrial hub and investment destination in West Africa.
“I am impressed by the huge size of the Lagos Free Zone project. We are very happy that the French companies will be deeply involved in this Lagos Free Zone project. It is really impressive to see how ambitious this project is. The French Minister was in Nigeria yesterday and I explained to him that Nigeria is a country where we can have big projects. For us, this project means big opportunities and that explains why we need to be here. We are happy to be here and work with Tolaram Group”, he added.
It is noteworthy to mention that the first French company to be established in the Lagos Free Zone is the terminal operations arm of CMA – CGM which has established a subsidiary within the Lagos Free Zone and is the appointed operator for the container terminal operations scheduled to commence at Lekki Port next year.
In his remarks, the Chief Executive Officer, Lagos Free Zone (LFZ), Mr. Dinesh Rathi assured the Ambassador of France and the Conseillers du Commerce Exterieur that the zone remains the best destination for investment in Nigeria and the West African sub-region given the seamless integration with Lekki Port and the world-class infrastructure provided by Lagos Free Zone.
Explaining the configuration of the zone, Rathi disclosed that the clustering is planned in line with the international best practices of Work, Live, and Play. He stated that the land-use plan of the Lagos Free Zone allocates 70 percent area towards industrial developments, 20 percent towards logistics and support services while the real estate will cover the remaining 10 percent.
He also stated that Lagos Free Zone (LFZ) has simplified the process of business entry and operation in the zone in line with the Federal Government of Nigeria’s Ease of Doing Business policy.
“We have made it very easy for the business to berth and take off at zone by making our process less cumbersome and friendly, we are open for business 24/7 and willing to help investors to settle in very fast,” he said.
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