PPPRA Pulls down Fuel Price Template after Outrage

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  • NNPC insists no increase in March

By Emmanuel Addeh

The Petroleum Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) has pulled down the template for petrol pricing in the month of March from its website after the uproar and confusion caused by the development.

According to the document, which it tagged “guiding price”, the amount the product would have been sold at the pumps would have been N212.6 per litre.

But the announcement caused serious anger on social media Friday morning, prompting the agency to remove the information from its website.

In its place, PPPRA explained that the document it released around midnight, was just a guide on the market situation, saying: “Be informed that published prices are only indicative of current market trends.”

In the same vein, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said it is sticking with its statement earlier in the month that there would be no fuel price increase in March, insisting on its official Twitter handle that: “There shall be no increase in ex-depot price of PMS in March.”

However, an analysis of its earlier released information, indicated that a subsidy of up to N50.61 was being paid per litre since the only importer of the product — the Pipelines Products Marketing Company (PPMC) — had yet to notify marketers of an upward review.

It further showed that the price of petrol may hit N212.61 per litre any time from now, if the authorities approved the latest price guide set by the agency.

Although the agency said last year that it would no longer be involved in fixing the price of the product since the market had been “deregulated”, it however released a lower band of N209.61 and higher band N212.61 per litre for the month in the latest template.

To put it in context, the price for February was N186.74 for the upper band and N183.73 for the lower band, although Nigerians paid less for the product last month, with the federal government saying it was still negotiating with organised labour.

The pricing template showed the average price per ton of the commodity was about $561.96, or N169.22 per litre, while the average freight rate coat (North-West Europe to West Africa) was about $21.63 per or N6.51 per litre.

Also, the agency in the figures released on its website earlier this morning, said the ex-coastal price was N175.73 per litre, average lightering expenses was fixed at N4.81 per litre, while the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) charge was put at N2.49 per litre.

In addition, the template revealed that the NIMASA charge is now N0.23 per litre; jetty thruput N1.61 per litre, while storage charge is N2.58 per litre and average finance cost of N2.17 per litre, giving an Expected Landing Cost (ELC) of N189.61.

Further analysis put the wholesale margin at N4.03 per litre; administration charge at N1.23 per litre; transporters’ allowance (NTA) was fixed at N3.89 per litre; bridging fund cost was N7.51 per litre and Marine Transport Average (MTA) remained at N0.15 per litre.

With this, the expected ex-depot price for wholesale products marketers would be N206.42 per litre.

Earlier in the month, NNPC assured Nigerians that there will be no price increase for the product in March until all negotiations with labour are concluded.