The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, on Sunday, disclosed that some of its key strategic interventions have led to a crash in the price of Automotive Gas Oil, AGO, otherwise called Diesel, to between N175 to N200 per litre across the country.
It explained, in a statement from its Group General Manager, Public Affairs, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, in Abuja, that the price was forced down by 42 per cent in the last six months from N300 per litre earlier recorded in the year, due to the interventions geared towards sustained improvement in the supply of the diesel.
NNPC noted that in the first quarter (Q1) of 2017, the retail prices of diesel, which is one of the deregulated petroleum products in the country, was N300 per litre in major demand centres, adding that prices were now within a bandwidth of N175 and N200 per litre.
The statement reads, “Such unpleasant situation placed a huge burden on truck drivers who need the product for transporting their vehicles, the nation’s manufacturing sector which requires it to run its operations, as well as on the masses who need it for household power generation.
“However, following strategic intervention efforts by the NNPC towards sustained improvement in the supply of the diesel, the product’s retail prices as at the end of May 2017 ranged from N175 to N200 across the country (a significant price drop of about 42 per cent), while ex-depot prices also dropped to between N135 and N155.
“Since January this year, we have worked very hard with relevant stakeholders to improve distribution from refinery depots, by implementing a robust loading programme.”
Ughamadu explained that in its quest to enhance efficient distribution of AGO, the NNPC was able to resuscitate its critical pipelines and depots in places such as Atlas Cove-Mosimi, Port-Harcourt Refinery-Aba and Kaduna Refinery-Kano, adding that efforts are also ongoing to revamp and commission other critical pipelines across the country.
“Another key intervention that has enhanced supply and distribution of diesel was the Corporation’s robust engagement with critical downstream stakeholders where salient issues were raised and duly addressed. These stakeholders include: Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO), Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) as well as Independent Petroleum Marketers,” he noted.
The NNPC further disclosed that as a result of consistent positive engagement with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, it equally extended the expansion of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, Foreign Exchange Intervention Scheme to accommodate diesel and Aviation Fuel.
“The general public is hereby assured that the Corporation would continue to ensure seamless supply and distribution of diesel and other petroleum products across the country to make the lives of Nigerians better,” the state oil company assured.