The Group General Manager, Crude Oil Marketing Department of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Mele Kyari, has said the nation's difficult business environment may make it difficult to sustain the current pump price of petrol.
He spoke at the 10th Oil Trading and Logistics Africa Downstream Week in Lagos, where he also said it was impossible to import products at the current market price, at current fixed foreign exchange rate and recovered one's money.
He said marketers that are currently selling below N145/litre are doing so because they are not the importers of the fuel. "Because we (NNPC) have taken the heat, and you buy from us you can afford to go to the market and then put a ridiculous price. It is not possible, because they did not import it."
However, Kyari ruled out the possibility of increasing the pump price by government due to the economic hardship in the country, saying, "It is impossible for this government to announce tomorrow that petrol is about N150. This government cannot sustain it. That is the truth. The people will not take that number. But that is why the suppliers now are not importing. It is not about the foreign exchange."
He said "we are in subsidy regime absolutely, there is no way you bring product today and take it and sell at N145 and get back your money, and make profit. That is not possible. You can see some marketers saying that fuel is N138. It is because they did not import. Somebody has taken the heat of the price.
Speaking, the Speaker of House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, who was represented by Chairman, House Committee on Downstream, Joseph Akinlaja, said the lower house was committed to reviewing and improving legislation regarding refining and key areas in the downstream sector operations in the country.