By Mike Adeyemi
The removal of subsidy on the petroleum by the Federal Government has been described as a blessing in disguise.
The Sale Rep of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Kwara State, Aminun Sulaiman, during a chat with our reporter in his office on Friday, said it would enable government to fix the nation’s refineries.
According to him, “the issue of subsidy on petroleum products has to be tackled once and for all, hence the decision of the government will bring about functional refineries in the country.
“We have to take a look at the long run effect of the subsidy removal as the system before now is at the detriment of the poor masses.
“The position of the government over subsidy removal is not bad in its totality. Instead of the government spending such a huge amount on subsidizing the product, the money can be channeled to build refineries in Nigeria.
“This will allow for competition in the market and it will bring down the prices as the market forces would determine the price,” Aminu explained.
He, however, said government should have engaged citizens more robust discussion so that people would have proper knowledge about the benefits of subsidy removal.
“As it stand now, the market forces will decide the price as this will attract actors in the market which will automatically bring about competition and leave the consumers to have choices, “he stated
It would be recalled that the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) last month announced an increase in petrol price of N151.56 to N162 per litre and directed all operators in the petrol retail business to comply immediately.
The development was hinged on the deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector, whereby market forces are to determine prices of petroleum products.
The new price with its cost-reflective nature is expected to help to improve product availability and attract investments to the sector as marketers now have increased margin.
By Mike Adeyemi