BY Bunmi Aduloju
The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) says three oil marketers will start importing petroleum products from next month.
Farouk Ahmed, chief executive officer (CEO) of NMDPRA, disclosed this on Wednesday, during a meeting with oil marketers.
According to a statement on the authority’s official Twitter handle, the meeting was held to raise awareness on the requirements of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) regarding the full deregulation and importation of petrol.
Speaking during the event, Ahmed emphasised the urgent need for product standardisation to prevent situations where consumers might be cheated by the importation of off-spec products into the country.
He said the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited had agreed to reduce its petrol import volume to give room for other players in the industry, “therefore any marketer licenced to import petroleum products must comply with set guidelines”.
“Already, three oil marketers will from July this year start importing petroleum products into the country,” he said.
Ahmed added that the oil marketers also reached an agreement to enhance cooperation with security agencies, with the aim of facilitating the seamless supply and distribution of petroleum.
In his inaugural speech on May 29, President Bola Tinubu declared that the petrol subsidy payments had stopped.
Although the president’s media team later clarified that the implementation of the policy would commence this month, post-subsidy realities kicked in immediately — sending the price of the product to high levels.
Conforming to the president’s directive, NNPC announced the adjustment of the pump price across its retail outlets nationwide.
Mele Kyari, group chief executive officer (GCEO), NNPC, had said due to the enabling environment that the subsidy removal would engender, oil marketing companies will be able to import petrol.
“The beauty of this is that there’ll be new entrants because oil marketing companies know the result of their reluctance to come into the market all along is the very fact that there’s a subsidy regime that is in place, and that subsidy regime doesn’t have the guarantee of repayment back to those who provide the product at subsidised prices,” Kyari had said.