June 3, 2020

Fuel subsidy removal: FG to legalise artisanal refiners


…To sell crude oil directly to them

…Petrol to sell for N80 per litre

By Chris Ochayi

The Federal Government has disclosed that it was developing a policy towards legalising the operations of the illegal crude oil refineries in order to make petroleum products available and affordable for Nigerians.

The government also noted when the effort sails through; petrol is expected to sell between N80 and N90 per little in the country.

Senior Special Advisers to the President o Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Ita Enang, who disclosed this, weekend, while speaking with journalists in Abuja, said government was determined to initiate programme that will encourage local refining of the crude oil in order to make the products available in the country.

Senator Enang noted further that with the recent removal of fuel subsidy, for the nation to solely depends on the products importation would counter productive in a population of over 200 million people.

He said the government is willing to sell the crude oil to the artisan refiners at international price instead of allowing the hitherto practice where the operators procure the product from illegal institute without the money getting into the government coffers.

According to him “The operators of these illegal refineries reveled to us that they have being taking the crude oil, refined and sell the oil without paying to the Federal Government but pay along the way to some illegal institutions.”

Noting the discussions aimed to legalise the operations of illegal refineries was an advance stage, the SSA said, “And that effort is ongoing, if it was ever 50 percent necessary, it is now 100 percent necessary.

READ ALSO: Oil prices edge down as wary traders eye upcoming OPEC+ meeting

“Because, when you consider the cost of oil, the price of crude oil, about $20 to $25 per barrel, when you consider the price at that time, you will now know. If you put it in the ship and send out, you will paying money, you pay export duty,  you will pay NIMASA, NPA, Customs, and all other agencies thereby increasing the price of the oil.

“When you landed in that country, you will also pay all the changes in that country inflating the price of the crude oil.

“If you take the cruise oil directly here, give it to the people in Nigeria, who are producing. Whatever capacity that they can produce, you will be able to produce these products, kerosene, diesel, petrol and engine oil and you you will sell the products at cheaper price.

“This is because all the contents that makes the price high like port charges, taxes, the customs, the NIMASA have been eliminated.”

He stressed further that, “So, now you will be able to bring down the cost of the products and make it easily available to Nigerians, particularly, kerosene, petrol and Diesel.

“Then the cost of production will be low, cost of transportation will be low because the cost fuel has been brought down.

“Fuel can now sell at N90 and N80 per litre. That is what we are doing in respect of making fuel available and affordable now.”

Senator Enang recalled that, his office, NNPC, NDDC, NEITI, PTDF and NOSDA have met with the Representatives of the operators of illegal refineries under the greater development of Niger Delta and value addition in the oil sector.

He said the operators told the meeting that they now prefer to buy the crude oil directly from the Federal Government because the cost of taking the oil from illegal institutions was almost higher that the price of the crude itself.