The federal government Thursday proceeded with the full deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector with the removal of the existing cap on petrol price, urging marketers to import and sell the product according to the dynamics of the forces of demand and supply.
This is coming as the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) yesterday blamed insecurity in the Niger Delta and other factors peculiar to Nigeria’s operating environment for the high cost of oil production in Nigeria.
The corporation, however, restated its commitment to achieving the target of cutting crude oil production cost threshold to $10 per barrel before the end of the fourth quarter of 2021.
With the latest development, it was learnt that petrol marketers can now import the product and sell at prevailing market prices, without the usual price band set by the concerned regulatory agency.
In a statement issued last night, the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), noted that henceforth prices would be fully determined by market forces.
The statement, which was signed by the agency’s Executive Secretary, Mr. Abdulkadir Saidu and backdated to March this year, noted that the agency would only continue to monitor trends in the crude oil market and advise the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and oil marketers accordingly.
“In exercise of the powers conferred on it by Section 7 and 24 of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (Establishment) Act. No. 8 of 2003, and all other powers enabling it in that behalf, the Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency, with the approval of the President hereby states the following:
“Market-based pricing regime for premium motor spirit (PMS) using the pricing template of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency:
“The price cap per litre in respect of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) is removed from the commencement of these regulations.
“From the commencement of these regulations, a market-based pricing regime for Premium Motor Saint (PMS) shall take effect. The agency shall monitor market trends and advise the NNPC and oil marketing companies on the monthly guiding market-based price,” it said.
It added that the new regulation may now be cited as the “Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) Market Based Pricing Regime Regulations, 2020”.
In the explanatory note to the regulation, it disclosed that the new regulation would complement and enforce the provisions of the 2003 Act and to notify the general public of the existence of a market-based pricing regime for the product starting from March this year.