Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is now the largest importer of petrol into the country, accounting for 90 per cent of the entire importation, the Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association (DAPPMA) has said.
DAPPMA also said that the corporation was not just importing the largest chunk of petrol consumed in the country, but equally distributing same to ensure a hitch-free products’ supply across the country.
According to the Chairman of DAPPMA, Mr Dapo Abiodun, the corporation’s market influence became very obvious during the end of year holiday season when it allegedly made sure petrol was supplied in abundance.
Group General Manager Public Affairs of the NNPC, Ndu Ughamadu, in a statement quoted Abiodun to have said this when he led a delegation of DAPPMA members on a courtesy call on the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru.
“In the past, we were importing 70 per cent of products while NNPC was importing 30 per cent, being the supplier of last resort which is their responsibility. They moved to doing 50 per cent and by November, they were doing about 90 per cent of the volumes.
“So, we have to come and appreciate them because in spite of the constraints that got them to take on the burden of increasing their importation from 30 per cent to 50 per cent and then 90 per cent, there were no hiccups, there were no queues, there were no shortages. We think NNPC should be commended for that,” Abiodun stated.
He said in the statement that DAPPMA was concerned that despite the huge investments of its members in the downstream, they were not able to contribute much to the efficiency in the system as certain operational exigencies have forced them to perform below capacity.
Speaking during the visit, Baru said NNPC was aware of the challenges being encountered in the sub-sector, and he was hopeful that the appropriate government agencies would see to their challenges.
He thanked the association for its appreciation of the corporation’s efforts at ensuring a stable products supply nationwide during the holiday season, stating that DAPPMA was part of the supply chain which made the feat a reality.
Baru said the NNPC appreciated the cordial business relationship between it and the association, and assured that the corporation would continue to keep supplies stable across the country.