The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has revealed that the non-availability of foreign exchange (FX) at the Central Bank of Nigeria rate to marketers is largely responsible for the increase of fuel scarcity as they source FX from the parallel market.
This was disclosed on Wednesday by PENGASSAN President, Mr Festus Osifo at a news conference on Wednesday in Lagos.
He urged that in the short term, the FG should make FX available to the importers at the official rate, and also remove levies on the import of fuel products.
What PENGASSAN is saying
Mr Festus Osifos said, “Although, the increase in the price of crude oil in the international market is partly responsible for the surge, from our findings, the non-availability of foreign exchange (FX) at Central Bank of Nigeria rate to marketers is largely responsible for the increase as they source FX from the parallel market.
- “This is without prejudice to the activities of unscrupulous marketers that are bent on milking Nigerians dry.“
- He also petitioned the FG to remove taxes and levies from the importation of petroleum products. He also called for the Nigeria Liquefied and Natural Gas and other gas producers to be mandated to focus more on domestic gas production, and also urged for efforts to be intensified to fast-track the current rate of rehabilitation of the nation’s four refineries to guarantee energy security.
- “While on the short term, make FX available to the importers at the official rate.
- “Should this abnormality and distortion continue, it has the ability to drive the country into another round of recession and further impoverish the already battered citizens,“ Osifo said.
On Electricity tariffs, the Union insists that there should be no increase in the tariff without a corresponding increase in power supply and total elimination from an era of estimated billings that have resulted in consumers paying more than their actual consumption.
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Nairametrics reported last week that Nigeria’s inflation rate changed direction in February as it rose 15.7% from 15.6% recorded in the previous month following the fuel scarcity across the country in February.