Kachikwu Begins Talks with CBN on Marketers’ Forex Requests

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Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu

Says current situation wearing down NNPC’s capacity
Chineme Okafor in Abuja
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, on Saturday disclosed that he had initiated consultations with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to help major oil marketers in Nigeria access foreign exchange to import petrol.

Disclosing this during a monitoring tour of petrol stations within Abuja metropolis, the minister said the move would help ease the burden of access to forex which reportedly hampers the ability of marketers to bring petrol into the country.

His tour was sequel to the resurgence of fuel queues at filling stations due to scarcity of petrol in all parts of the country.
The minister said already, the situation was beginning to wear down the capacity of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to meet the country’s fuel consumption which is officially put at 40 million litres per day.

Noting that NNPC is currently the sole importer and supplier of petrol in the country, he expressed hopes that the lingering fuel scarcity and queues at filling stations would ease off within two days as the corporation had massively increased the trucking of petrol to depots and filling stations in the country.

In December 2015 when the country experienced a bout of petrol scarcity, oil marketers had alleged that federal government’s policy on forex restriction was responsible for their inability to import petrol, hence the scarcity.
But Kachikwu said yesterday that, “God willing, we will see this through and under one or two days, we should be clear and we are looking at long term.

“We are working very collaboratively with the Central Bank now to try and look at long term solutions to the majors so that they themselves can begin to go back and bring in their own products, and so apologies again to Nigerians, nobody wants to see this.”
Commenting further on the lingering scarcity, Kachikwu said: “we have enough coming in. Obviously the three days of strike hit us very badly but we are flogging again an average of over 300 trucks into Abuja. It is going to take a bit of a while for the queues to clear off and we are hoping that between tomorrow and the next one, two days, the queues will all disappear.”

“We are continuing to pump in, a lot of our stations are open 24 hours a day. Long term obviously, we have got to systemically look at how you prepare this nation in circumstances where there are emergencies and you are able to respond.”
He said he would initiate a long-term solution to curb the menace of products scarcity in the country, but did not give details of the planned solution.

Pleading with Nigerians to bear with the government, Kachikwu said, “We are obviously not getting it as well as we should. Again, I apologise to Nigerians for all the pains, nobody wants to see people spend up to two hours on fuel queues.

“The president is very bothered about this, and if there is anything that bothers him, it is the sight of people waiting for fuel but we are doing everything we can, the NNPC is taking the whole nation on its shoulders.”

“Whilst majors are really not bringing in products, we are working on long-term solutions so they now begin to go back to importation lanes and be able to service their own outlets rather than us servicing them and servicing everybody because it is a lot of wear and tear on our capability status.”​

  • Olumide Soneye

    Tinubu and Dangote – the untouchable depot owners sells to independent marketers at 107 and you want them to sell at 87. Instead of you to go after the depot owners that sells above approved price, you are sealing off petrol stations.

    This is what happens when morons manage the economy. As a sole distributor, you already know 40 million litters is needed everyday, the lead time and buffer stock should not be difficult to calculate.

  • vic

    KACHIKWU NOT AGAIN.

    DO NOT DIP YOUR FINGERS INTO CBN DOLLARS AGAIN. CBN HAS BEEN LOOTED ENOUGH. HOW MANY DOLLARS HAVE YOU PUT INTO THE CBN SINCE YOUR ARRIVAL, YOU DOLLAR LOOTERS???????

    GOING TO CBN HAS BECOME ONE WAY TRAFFIC FOR ALL THESE DOLLAR-SNATCHER CORRUPT POLITICIANS.

  • Braithwaite Umenta

    Like seriously NNPC? 40 million litres a day, let s say a litre costs 100 naira, = 100 x 40million=4 billion divided by 200/dollar(official exchange rate)=20 million dollars costs Nigeria daily to use petrol, lets say imported petrol is about 35 million litres(the rest domestic), and u add other miscellaneous expenses it is still approximately 20 million dollars Nigeria need to spend a day to import petrol…………. can’t we just dismantle, sell these old out of fashion refineries as a scrap, empower more indigenous investors and build our own refineries? Mr Kachikwu you need to be discussing with private investors for long term solution while also discussing with CBN governor on the short term measures. Indigenous private investors (Dangote has already started one in Lagos) is the best, because the foreign investors will still come, build get the naira from profits of their refinery, exchange it to dollars and go away with it.

  • Mickey

    When a man begins to use words like God willing, you know he is begging God to touch the heart of an ignorant fellow (Buhari). Can’t we share this country and allow Buhari rule North and Southwest. Why should we suffer in south south because there are too many illiterates and ethnic bigots in this country. Na wa o