The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has advised motorists and other petroleum product consumers to ignore the trending rumour of a planned hike in the pump price of petrol.
The Premium Motor Spirit, popularly known petrol according to the corporations Group Public Affairs Division Manager, Mr Ndu Ughamadu, is not planned to be increased.
Ughuamadu clarified that the NNPC GMD Mallam Mele Kolo Kyari statement during his engagement with the Senate President, Senator Ahmed Lawan, was that the price of petrol was abysmally low in Nigeria compared to what obtained in neighbouring West African countries.
He noted that Kyari had observed at the event that the huge disparity in the pump price of petrol between Nigeria on the one hand and her neighbouring countries, on the other hand tended to encourage cross-border smuggling
The oil firm advised Nigerians to disregard the insinuation of a planned hike in the price of petrol by NNPC.
It also stated that statutorily NNPC was not even in a position to regulate the price of petroleum products, adding that the corporation’s role as an operator must be differentiated from that of any of the industry regulators.
NNPC has cautioned marketers to maintain pump prise and also advised Nigerians to remain vigilant and volunteer information to the Department of Petroleum Resources, the industry regulator, or to any law enforcement agency around them, on any station which sells petrol beyond N145 per litre.
Meanwhile the Corporation having met with the National Assembly has said that it’s set for a new era of robust engagement with the lawmakers to ensure speedy passage of laws related to the Oil and Gas Industry for enhanced performance.
The new GMD who was accompanied on the visit by his predecessor, Dr. Maikanti Baru, said the corporation would give maximum support and cooperation to the legislative arm of government to ensure the emplacement of an enabling legal framework for the growth of the Oil and Gas sector.
Speaking at the occasion, the immediate past GMD of NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, explained stated that beyond introducing his successor, the visit was meant to canvass the Senate’s support for the quick passage of the Deep Offshore Amendment Bill which has the potential of boosting the Federal Government’s revenue by about $5bn per annum.
Shedding light on the significance of the bill, he explained that the nation had been virtually losing revenue running into billions of dollars due to delay in the review of the extant Deep Offshore Act,
which stipulates that the fiscal terms could be reviewed when the price of crude oil had surpassed the $20 barrel mark and production had gone on in those acreages consistently for 15 years.
Baru further said the amendment bill proposes to raise the royalty paid on deep offshore production in order to ensure a higher revenue take for government, adding that no operator could oppose such a move as it was fair going by current market realities.