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Economy

Petrol Queues May Not Disappear Soon, Says Kachikwu

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Ibe Kachikwu
  • Petrol Queues May Not Disappear Soon, Says Kachikwu

The queues for Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known as petrol, in some parts of the country may not go away soon, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, said on Thursday.

He, however, stated that a lot of work was being done by the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to address the situation, adding that PMS importation burden on the NNPC was so much.

The minister, who spoke during the conclusion of the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit in Abuja, also stated that the country needed $100bn worth of investments in order to revive its oil and gas industry.

Responding to a question on how he intends to ensure that the petrol queues, which are gradually disappearing in Abuja and neighbouring states, did not reappear after the close of the NIPS, Kachikwu stated that he doubted if the situation had gone finally.

He said, “Even though I did tell the NNPC to make sure that there was no queue during this period, it should have been looked at literarily. It was basically saying that it’s gone on for a long time and you need to find a solution. The GMD has been very busy on a day-to-day basis and we are trying to implement whatever policies are in place currently to ensure that the queues do not come back. So I am sure we are going to continue to embed that policy.

“Has it gone away finally and for good? I don’t think so. I don’t think so in the sense that there are still a few things and there are importations taking place, there are reserves that are being rebuilt and so a bit of challenge. But I know what they’ve done is being able to manage the logistics angle very well.”

He added, “You also know that as we begin to trend into the late March period, the market dynamics change, products become slightly cheaper because of the summer and winter issues. So, what you might then have is that some marketers, who are on the fringes and who have efficiency levels, might begin to bring in a few cargoes themselves and supplement.

“But I’m hoping that before then, some of the resolutions that we have come to, which his Excellency is considering, would have been approved and it will give the NNPC a lot more leeway in terms of being able to address this issue. So I’m hoping it’s (petrol queues) not going to come back.”

The minister insisted that other marketers had to come into the business of petrol importation, as the burden was too much on the NNPC.

Kachikwu said, “It is critical that we bring back market players in terms of importation. It is too much of a burden to have the NNPC as the last supplier of the product to the country. It is not just something that can be achieved. They have done quite a lot of work this week, courtesy of the ultimatum that I gave, as they have succeeded in taking it out of Abuja.

“Not taking it out and resurfacing tomorrow, that is the issue we need to go and address. The endemic business model. The business model is that the landing price is higher than the sale price, and second is that we do not want to increase price. So, in between those two, we need to find things that enable us provide incentives to the private sector to come back to business.

“And it should be a short-term thing. Hopefully, it should be something that will last over the next 18 months, while the refineries are being re-kitted. But after that, if we still do not address the market fundamentals of the business, it will be like what you are suffering in power, whereby you have trapped 2,000MW of power that cannot be delivered because we have refused to pay the right price for power.”

He, however, observed that, “For now the directives we are working on is that no price increase because people are already going through a lot of groaning and difficult time. Obviously, the President is very concerned about that.”

On investments in the oil sector and where the government targets to get investors, Kachikwu stated that about $40bn worth of investments were being expected in Nigeria in few years’ time, but noted that the oil and gas sector needed $100bn investments to be revived.

He said, “I did mention that about $40bn investments are coming from three very unique projects: Egina, $15bn; the Bonga, which we are heading for FID is about $10bn; the Zabazaba is also about $12bn. We have investments that are coming into the downstream, to the refineries, which are invariable $2.5bn to $3bn, and the AKK pipeline is about $3bn.”

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Economy

Delta State Gov Okowa Presents N378.48 Billion Budget for 2021

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Ifeanyi Okowa Presents N378.48 Billion Proposed Budget for 2021

The Executive Governor of Delta State, Senator (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, on Tuesday presented a N378.48 billion budget to the state’s House of Assembly for consideration for the 2021 fiscal year.

The budget christened “Budget of Recovery” appropriated N207.52 billion for Capital Expenditure while Recurrent Expenditure was allocated N171.32 billion.

According to the Governor, capital expenditure accounted for 54.76 percent of the budget while 45.24 percent represented recurrent expenditure.

He explained that the allocations were in line with his administration’s agenda of spending more on projects and programmes that would impact positively on the socio-economic well-being of the people of Delta.

The proposed budget for 2021 is N96.2 billion or 34.05 per cent more than the N282 billion approved for 2020.

The governor said that the 2021 budget proposals reinforced the state government’s commitment to road infrastructure, education, health, job and wealth creation programmes as the principal-drivers of the Stronger Delta agenda.

According to him, N113 billion, representing 89.94 per cent of the capital budget is allocated to the economic sector while N35 billion is allocated to the social sector; the administration sector got 10.93 billion and the regional sector, N42 billion.

“In 2021, we propose to spend N66.66 billion on Road Infrastructure; N6.79 billion on Health; Education will gulp N23.55 billion; Agriculture, N2.04 billion and Water Sector, N1.83 billion.

“Job and Wealth Creation Bureau will gulp N1 Billion and Youth Development, N1.25 billion. These key sectors are very essential in our 2021 budget,” Okowa said.

Okowa also explained that due to the negative impact of COVID-19 on the economy and the world at large, government spending was significantly affected by the global pandemic and that Delta was no exception.

The governor, therefore, stated that “the proposed 2021 Budget for Delta is primarily focused on protecting and supporting our people in a COVID-19 environment, accelerating infrastructural renewal, incentivizing growth, enhancing job creation, engendering social inclusion and developing sustainably.

“Overall, the proposed 2021 Budget is predicated on inclusive economic growth that is sustainable and people-centred, with strengthening fiscal sustainability through increased efficiency in spending, improved revenue mobilization and debt sustainability.

“It also entails improving processes and systems in Public Financial Management, and Monitoring and Evaluation, to bolster better public sector service delivery.”

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Economy

FG to Create 5 Million Jobs for Nigerian Youths in the Power Sector

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Federal Government Plans to Create 5 Million Jobs for Youths in the Power Sector

The Federal Government is working on creating at least 5 million jobs for Nigerian youths in the power sector, according to the Minister of Power, Engr. Sale Mamman.

The minister, who spoke at a stakeholder meeting in Jalingo, Taraba State, said the youths should foster peace and harmony as the Federal Government, in line with some of their demands, is working on creating massive job opportunities for them in the power sector.

He said the initiative is part of president Muhammadu Buhari’s plans to lift 100 million people out of poverty within 10 years.

Mamman explained that the youths will benefit from the Siemens Presidential Power Initiative as more opportunities will be available in renewable energy, installation and the maintenance of meters.

He said: “Plans are ongoing to kick start this and it is being designed to ensure that majority of the firms and the installers are Nigerian youths. This is also part of the commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari’s focus on lifting 100 million people out of poverty within 10 years.

“From the briefings I have received so far, the youths are taking up opportunities in this aspect as well as in renewable energy. This is another way the government will be empowering young Nigerians as the local assembly; installation and the maintenance of these meters are largely handled by our industrious youths.”

“The minister urged the youths to vigilant and resist and attempt by some people to use them to incite violence for their sinister motive, noting that the Federal Government was tailoring more programmes for the youths through the Siemens Presidential Power Initiative and in building capacity on renewable energy.”

“There is the assurance of Mr. President that Nigerians will be beneficiaries of the Siemens project which will turn around the power supply situation of Nigeria. When this happens, industries will be revived and SMEs driven by youths will thrive more.”

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Economy

Lagos Loses N1 Trillion to #EndSARS Protest, a Year Budget – Gov

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Lagos Needs N1 Trillion to Fix Vandalised Infrastructure, a Year Budget – Gov

The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has puts the total economic cost of past week destruction and vandalism in the state at about N1 trillion.

Sanwo-olu, who spoke with the speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, that was on a fact-finding visit to Lagos on Sunday, said the state may spend up to N1 trillion to fix damages done to infrastructure.

Speaking on the situation, Femi Gbajabiamila, said “The House of Representatives will do all it can to compensate all those who suffered brutality including policemen that lost their lives in the process.

“Also whatever the house can do in rebuilding Lagos and other states it will do. We are now in a state of reconstruction. What must be done will be done.

“I learnt from the governor of Lagos State that it will take N1.0 trillion to rebuild what had been lost and I asked him what is the budget size of the state he said about N1.0 trillion. You can see we are moving backward.

Rotimi Akeredolu, Chairman of the South West Governors, who was part of the visit, stated, “We are indeed surprised at the extent of damage to lives and properties in Lagos. We will be right to say Lagos was turned into a war zone.

“We are deeply concerned with the ease with which public buildings, utilities, police stations and investments of our people have been burnt despite the proximity of security agencies to those areas. However, while responding to the total number of government’s buildings burnt among others,” Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, stated.

We are still counting. The state is still taking inventories of all that happened and not until all that is concluded we can’t not ascertained for now the total number of burnt structures. But I can tell you it’s very huge.

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