PPPRA-LogoPetroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) has put the total investments in the downstream sub-sector of Nigeria’s oil and gas industry at N1.6 trillion since last year.

The investment profile however did not capture initiatives of Dangote Group in the industry.

The Executive Secretary of the agency, Executive Secretary of the PPPRA, Reginald Stanley, who made this disclosure at the on going Oil Trading and Logistics Downstream conference in Lagos, said that the early passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), would increase the level of investments in the sector.

According to him, there is already increase in investments with the proposed plans by Aliko Dangote to invest billions of naira in the establishment of a private refinery, which is expected to boost business activities in the downstream sector.

Stanley added: “Nigeria is the highest consumer of refined petroleum products in West Africa.  We have had the pain of having to refine our petroleum products.  The recent move by a private individual to have a refinery built in the country is a welcome development.  The oil and gas is becoming very competitive and it is only a few that can survive”.

He said that a comprehensive reform programme put in place by the current administration yielded outstanding results last year.

He disclosed that the amount of yearly subsidy expended has reduced by 59.05 per cent, while the amount of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) consumed per day has came down by 34.17 per cent to 39.66 million litres.

Stanley disclosed that the quantity of petroleum products being imported into the country has also reduced from 60.5 million litres in 2011 to 39.6 million litres in 2012, while the number of petroleum marketers has also reduced from 128 to 42.

He noted: “It should be reemphasized that the nation has never recorded any shortage in products supply in spite of the reduction in the number of marketers”.

The PPPRA chief disclosed that the agency has engaged in conducting regular monthly import performance review meetings to resolve marketers’ complaints through effective mediation.

This, he said, has helped in no small measure in restoring marketers’ confidence to import products in the light of the subsidy removal debate and budget approval uncertainties, thus stabilizing seamless product supply to the nation.

He added: “We have also embarked on periodic surprise stock-taking exercises in marketers’ facilities. First-in-history stock taking exercise on 1st Jan 2012 and on 16th Jan 2012 following the declaration of PMS Price deregulation by government and its withdrawal which saved the nation about N54 billion. Mid-year and end of year stock-taking exercise are also mandatory. These stock-taking exercises are conducted by certified inspectors and staff of the agency.

“We have conducted monthly and mid-quarter Import Performance review meetings with stakeholders and resolved marketers’ complaints through effective mediation despite the erosion of marketers confidence to import due to budget approval and payment uncertainties”.

 

Information from The Guardian was used in this report.

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