Marketers under the umbrella of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) have said the N250 billion Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Gas Expansion programme (GEP) can settle the perennial crisis over the petrol subsidy.
Its National Vice President, Alhaji Abubakar Maigandi, said an implementation of the programme can reduce Nigeria’s reliance on petrol and its associated challenges.
The Gas Expansion Programme, according to the apex bank, is to support players in the industry to produce and distribute more gas.
The gas includes: Compressed Natural Gas for fuelling vehicles, especially the passenger ones and the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) for domestic has utilisation.
Describing the initiative as apt, the National Vice President said with the implementation, transporters can have alternative to their choice of petrol.
According to him, “that CBN intervention programme is a very good one provided it can be distributed to marketers to expand their gas businesses as the government is planning to reduce dependence on petrol and remove subsidy”.
He revealed that even though his members are yet to access the fund, the association has been holding meetings with the CBN on how to access it.
Similarly, the President, Consumer Protection Network, Barrister Kola Olubiyo, explained that the CBN intervention programme as a right step in the right direction.
He noted that it will bring to an end the perennial crisis over fuel subsidy.
The activist said: “The issue of fuel subsidy and its attendant crisis will be taken out. So, it is a welcome development”.
With the ever rising price of petrol, marketers and consumers are always apprehensive about the landing cost of the product. This is so because, aside the cost of crude oil, there are other factors that influence its market.
At the moment there is little or no refining of the product in the country.
It makes importation of petrol a sane quo non to meet the 56 million litres per day consumption in Nigeria.
Although all marketers are at liberty to import the product, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) remains its sole importer as a result of high cost of exchange rate.
Consumers and marketers are upbeat that access to the facility will not only deepen gas for fuelling vehicles in the country; it will save the environment from pollution and settle the petrol subsidy controversy forever.