Contrary to insinuations on the social media, the Bola Tinubu administration has not returned to payment of subsidy to any person or group for bringing petroleum products into the country.
The Group Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Malam Mele Kyari, said the government is no longer paying subsidy on petrol as being speculated.
Kyari told State House correspondents on Monday in Abuja: “No subsidy whatsoever. We are recovering our full cost from the products that we import. We sell to the market.
“We understand why marketers are unable to import. We hope that they begin to do so very quickly and these are some of the interventions government is making. There is no subsidy.”
On low queues being witnessed in some states recently, Kyari attributed it to the deplorable state of the roads which, he said, had forced some transporters to divert petrol to other routes.
“We have seen in very few states pockets of very low queues. This is not unconnected with the road situation and that is why we are seeing some blockades on our roads.
“Moving the products from the southern depots into the northern part of the country takes them much longer time now than it used to be.
“They have to re-route their trucks around many locations for them to be able to reach their destinations and that created delays and some supply gaps. But that has been filled and we do not see any of such problems again.
“Secondly, because of the full deregulation that we have in this sector, marketers are now competing amongst themselves,” Kyari said.
He also said that some of the queues were caused by the preference of customers to patronize filling stations that offered lower and affordable prices.
“You must have noticed that some fuel stations will reduce their prices by N2 or N3. So customers will naturally run to the places where you have that reduction in prices and probably create panic.
“This is because those who don’t know why they are doing it will think that there is something happening or that there is an ominous sign of scarcity,’’ he said.
The NNPCL boss confirmed that about 1.4 billion litres of petrol are available for local consumption both on the seas and on land, saying there is no cause for alarm.
Kyari explained that market forces were now playing out and that marketers were competing for the product and how to satisfy their customers.
‘’There are few issues we’re engaging them to resolve, alongside other agencies of government, particularly critical issues around access to foreign exchange.
“And as you all know, government is doing so much to ensure supply of forex into the market. We know that this FX markets will stabilize the current I&E window is around 770.
“And we know that those inputs from government will crystalise and they will come to an equilibrium position in the FX market and this is the dream of this country,’’ he said.