Large consignments of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, being imported by NNPCL and major oil marketers, are to hit Nigeria from next week and may force down the price of the commodity, both major and independent dealers stated on Sunday.
It was also gathered that crude oil refiners were currently releasing refined petroleum products on credit to dealers from Nigeria, following the recent unification of the country’s exchange, which boosted the confidence of operators.
This came as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, told the press that they would compete with the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited on the importation of petrol, stressing that this would crash the cost of PMS.
Before the President, Bola Tinubu, removed subsidy on petrol, the product was solely imported by NNPCL, as other marketers stopped its imports due to their inability to access the United States dollar.
At the time, oil marketers explained that the NNPCL was accessing the dollar at a lower rate, which was unfair and did not support PMS importation by other dealers.
But with the recent unification of the exchange rate, oil marketers had to join in the importation of petrol and confirmed that the products should be arriving Nigeria from next week.
Asked to state when the products being imported by major marketers would start hitting Nigeria, the Executive Secretary, Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria, Clement Isong, replied, “I will simply say between the second and third week of July”
Isong, however, explained that the NNPCL had made a lot of fuel imports, as some of its vessels were still on the way to Nigeria.
“Let me say that NNPCL has imported significantly to prevent the country from running dry. The vessels NNPCL imported are offshore Nigeria, so they have a significant volume, therefore in all circumstances the country will not run dry.
“So the options everybody has is that they can buy from NNPCL ex-depots or they can go and import from Europe or from other places. The assignment is that you compare your price if you buy from NNPCL or import from Europe.
“More or less, the taste of the pudding is in the eating. So do your calculation as the best as you can. But you will only know the full impact when the product is in your tank. If it goes right, it is then that you will know how competitive your price is. The more you do it, the more efficient you become,” Isong stated.
On how marketers were sourcing of forex for imports, the MOMAN officials dealers were accessing the foreign exchange from banks and other sources.
“People access forex from different places. Just that it is easier for some people than others. Some people have strong banks, while others have other means of accessing forex. So everyone plays on their strength and ability to access forex.
“And it must be stated that the floating of the exchange rate is a plus, for instance, some people can go and get credits from their suppliers, while others have LCs (Letters of Credits), means of borrowing, etc.