The federal government says it has not removed subsidies on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise known as fuel.
Chief Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources revealed this when speaking to reporters on Monday in Abuja.
The Minister spoke on the sidelines of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) stakeholder consultation forum on the regulations.
The forum was organized by the authority to review and revise the midstream and downstream petroleum regulations to bequeath the industry with laws and policies that enable the necessary investments in the sector.
Sylva was reacting to traders raising the pump price of oil from N165 per liter to N169, N184 and N218 per liter depending on the Abuja region and other states.
“I can tell you with authority that we have not deregulated. The government still subsidizes gasoline prices. If there are price increases, it’s not from the government.
“It’s probably coming from the traders but of course I’ll be talking to the authorities to make sure they actually regulate the price. It’s not from the government, we haven’t deregulated.
“But there’s a lot going on to make sure the queues end. Since yesterday, I have noticed that the queues in Abuja are decreasing,” the minister said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that there has recently been a fuel shortage in Abuja and several other cities across the country.
Although the crisis in Abuja began in 2021 after the government announced plans to scrap fuel subsidies, a major shortage hit major cities including Lagos in February.
This has led to queues at gas stations and millions of people unable to power their cars and the generators they depend on for electricity.
The discovery of large amounts of methanol in imported fuel also contributed to the scarcity of the era, as authorities attempted to replace the off-spec product across the country.
The crisis persisted for months despite assurances from the federal government that it had a sufficient supply of petroleum products for distribution.
The shortage continued in Abuja “intermittently”, while black market sales flourished.
The Association of Distributors and Transporters of Petroleum Products (ADITOP) had told NAN earlier that the high cost of automotive diesel (AGO) used by oil tankers and the low freight rate were responsible for the current fuel shortage in the FCT. .
The Federal Government had since increased the carriers’ freight rate by N10, which was a huge jump from N10.46 to an additional N10 and now N20.46. (NOPE)