FG, Marketers to Meet over Price of Petrol

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Chinedu Eze

Major and independent marketers have been invited by the federal government to deliberate on the new price of petrol, as price of crude oil in the international market continues to rise.

This was disclosed yesterday by the President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Mr. Chinedu Okoronkwo, in an interview with ARISE NEWS Channel, a sister broadcast arm of THISDAY Newspaper.

Okoronkwo assured that government would come to agreeable price for the product and condemned the Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) for speculating the price of N212 per litre of petrol, which drove the country into frenzy and panic.

He said that in a deregulated environment, the price of the product should not matter but its availability, s because the product availability would determine the price.

“The aim of government is to move the country forward; so, the objective of the meeting is to come to agreeable price. The independent marketers have been invited. The major marketers have also been invited by government and I assure you that government will come up with what will be good for everyone. I fully support deregulation. In a deregulated regime price does not matter; what matters is the availability of the product,” he said.

He also said that Nigeria spends N70 billion a month and about N2 billion daily on petrol and canvassed for alternative source of energy.

Okoronkwo noted that the government is pushing for autogas, which would be cheaper and environmentally cleaner.

Okoronkwo emphasised that the huge amount of money being spent can be channeled to gas, noting that it is a major programme by the federal government, which is already carrying out industry-wide consultations to ensure smooth and quick transition to cleaner automotive fuel under government’s autogas policy.

The IPMAN president said that the government would soon roll it out, assisted by the state governments and this would give car owners alternatives, whether to operate with petrol or gas.

“The whole idea is to free some money and create room for other sectors of the economy like agriculture, health, education and others. Autogas will provide the alternative and this will reduce the huge resources spend on petroleum,” he said.