President Bola Tinubu has assured that measures would be taken to stabilise the supply and demand of petrol in the country.
The Presidential spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, who disclosed this on Tuesday, said the measures would involve addressing the inefficiencies noticed in the downstream and midstream oil sector.
Tinubu said that there was no need for actions that are detrimental to the economy now, urging all groups to do some fact finding and diligence on current state of petroleum industry.
“The President wishes first to state that it is incumbent upon all stakeholders in the country to hold their peace. We have heard very recently from the organised labour movement in the country with respect to their most recent threat.
“We believe that the threat was premature and that there is a need on all sides to ensure that fact finding and diligence is done on what the current state of the downstream and midstream petroleum industry is before any threats or conclusions are arrived at or issued.
“Secondly, Mr President, wishes to assure Nigerians following the announcement by the NNPC Limited just yesterday that there will be no increase in the pump price of premium motor spirit anywhere in the country,” he said.
The president said that government would continue to maintain competitive environment within all sub-sectors of the petroleum industry.
“We are determined to ensure that our policy drawn up as well as policy implemented follows the cue that there will not be any single entity dominating the market.
“The market has been deregulated. It has been liberalised and we are moving forward in that direction without looking back.
“There are presently inefficiencies within the midstream and downstream petroleum sub-sectors that once very swiftly addressed and cleaned up will ensure that we can maintain prices where they are without having to resort to a reversal of this administration’s deregulation policy in the petroleum industry.”
He said that the current prices of fuel across Africa showed that Nigeria still sells at the cheapest price, adding that the regulation has achieved the desired effect as indicated by the consumption rate.
“Senegal at pump price today of N1,273 equivalent per litre, Guinea at N1,075 per litre, Côte d’ Ivore at N1,048 per litre equivalent in their currency, Mali N1,113 per litre, Central African Republic N1,414 per litre, Nigeria is presently averaging between N568 and N630 per litre.
“We are presently the cheapest, most affordable purchasing state in the West African sub-region by some distance. There is no country that is below N700 per litre.
“At the inception of our deregulation policy as of June 1, as Mr President took office, we have seen PMS consumption in the country drop immediately from 67 million litres per day down to 46 million litres per day consumption. The impact is evident,” he said.
The president added that the variables considered before subsidy removal has changed significantly where suppliers no longer get the forex as expected from the window.
“What it also does mean though, is that we are not at the end of the tunnel. There is still a bit of darkness to travel through to get towards the light.
“And we are pleading with Nigerians to please be patient with us. And as we promised from the beginning we will be open with Nigerians; we will be transparent with them.
“We are ready to show you exactly what it is that our nation is facing with respect to the illiquidity in the market in terms of foreign exchange, as a result of what is now known to have been a gross mismanagement of the Central Bank of Nigeria over the course of several years preceding this time,” he said.