The board of the Petroleum Products Pricing Agency (PPPRA) will meet on Thursday to consider the review of the petroleum pricing template. This we understand is due to recent developments in the petroleum sector such as the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) indirectly subsidizing petrol prices and evidences of petroleum scarcity popping around the country.
The template was last reviewed in May 2016, but increases in crude oil prices and a further depreciation of the Naira against the dollar, may have necessitated the review. Media reports a few days ago also suggest commercial banks are no longer funding oil marketers, due to non repayment of debts owed during the subsidy era.
Unions in the petroleum industry have however opposed an increase in petrol prices. The House of Representatives has also criticized the administrative charge of 30 kobo per litre collected by the agency calling it unnecessary.
Mr Gbenga Osinowo Director-General Nigerian Employers Consultative Association (NECA) and a PPPRA board member confirmed the meeting as well as the template adjustment being part of the agenda.
Fuel queues were seen in some locations in Lagos on Tuesday an indication that oil marketers believe that there could be a change in price any time soon. This typically instigates hoarding of products as marketers see an opportunity to make quick profits.
The Government also insisted last week that it was not going to increase fuel price leading analysts to believe that a return of subsidy could be in the offing. The Nigerian government recently tabled a N7.2 trillion budget that is now been debated at the National Assembly. The budget did not include a provision for fuel subsidy.