Nigeria slashes fuel imports

11 June 2012, Sweetcrude, LAGOS - NIGERIA has slashed its fuel imports volume by 180,000 metric tonnes, in what the fuel prices regulatory agency says will check shady deals in the nation’s fuel import scheme.

The Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) cut fuel to be imported by the oil marketing companies by that volume for the second quarter of the year.

It had in the first quarter of the year issued permits to 42 oil depot and facility owners to import a total of 3.755million metric tonnes of premium motor spirit (petrol), which is equivalent to 5.036billion litres.

But, it slashed the volume in the second quarter to 3.575million metric tonnes or equivalent of 4.794billion litres, reflecting a drop of 180,000 metric tonnes or 241.38 million litres despite retaining the same 42 marketing companies.

Following events in the first quarter, which saw the removal of fuel subsidy and subsequent fixing of a litre of fuel at N97, as well as the subsidy regime probe, the agency has tried to show transparency in the fuel import scheme.

It first reduced the number of fuel importing firms from 125 to 42 in the first quarter befoe the action, slashing the volume of fuel imports.