12 June 2015, Abuja — In a bid to end the fuel shortages across the country, the federal government has approved fuel import allocations for the third quarter of 2015 to 29 oil marketing and trading companies.
The 29 marketers include the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, which in the last couple of months has struggled to sustain supply.
It was gathered that the approval was given by President Muhammadu Buhari to the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPPRA, to allow NNPC and other oil marketers to import fuel into the country this quarter.
The third quarter import allocation is thought to be around 1.6 million metric tonnes of petrol, a source in PPPRA disclosed. NNPC, NIPCO Plc, Oando Plc, Conoil, Mobil Oil, Masters Energy, Techno Oil and Folawiyo Oil and Gas, Total Nigeria Plc and Mobil Oil Plc are some of the companies granted imported allocations.
Although the PPPRA was yet to issue an official statement on the third quarter import allocation, another source in PPPRA said the agency now expects major oil marketers to resume importation of petrol after extracting a promise from the government that outstanding claims on subsidies will be paid.
“I know that 29 marketers have been approved to import fuel into the country but their identity is what I don’t know because the approval came from the Presidential Villa on Wednesday,” he said.
Efforts to get the General Manager, Operations at PPPRA, Mr. Victor Shidok to confirm the third quarter allocations, yielded no result as calls and texts to his phone were unanswered.
The country in recent months has suffered fuel shortages caused by the federal government’s failure to pay outstanding subsidy claims to oil marketers.
*Chineme Okafor – Thisday