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PMS price cut: Retail Outlet owners beg FG for loans

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By Johnbosco Agbakwuru

IN a bid to cushion the effect of recent slash in the price of petroleum products, the Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria, PETROAN, has appealed to the federal government to come to the aid of its members with soft-loans. 
The association made the appeal in a statement signed by its President, Dr Billy Gillis-Harry, and the Assistant Secretary, Ogbuefi E. Erasmus, which was made available to journalists in Abuja.
While commending President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, for showing leadership and compassion to the feeling of the ordinary Nigerians, by reducing the pump price of the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) twice in less than four weeks, 

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PETROAN noted that its members had incurred huge losses, which could send most of them out of business if there was no fast intervention.
It assured that its members would comply with government’s compassionate move of price reduction, and pleaded with the President to direct relevant government agencies to urgently arrange an intervention fund to be managed by the nation’s apex bank, the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, for PETROAN members as soft loans to sustain their businesses with.
The statement read in part, “We, the members of PETROAN, as an obedient citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and partners in progress with the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, are very willing to obey and comply with the new reduction in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit as this, we are confident, will help reduce the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Nigeria Economy.
“However, our association wishes to bring to the notice of the Federal
Government the challenges of Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners in Nigeria. Our members have recorded massive losses from 19th of March 2020 when the first reduction was announced by the Federal Government.
“With the further reduction in price by the Federal Government our members again will lose a sizable amount of money, which will impact negatively on their buying power, which will inevitably spiral down to a reduction in patronage of the government approval petroleum products distribution depot.
“We, therefore, wish to appeal to the Federal Government, PPPRA and another relevant stakeholder to come to our aid by urgently setting up an intervention fund to be midwifed by the CBN and disburse to our members in form of soft loans so as to cushion the effect of the PMS price reduction on the businesses of our teeming members and to guarantee to replenish investible capital.

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