Abuja — The Nigerian Government, yesterday, said henceforth, Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG, consumers, would no longer be allowed to own cylinders, instead, the ownership of the cylinders would rest solely on owners of the gas refilling plant.
Speaking in Abuja, at a stakeholders’ forum on the implementation of the micro-distribution system to boost LPG penetration, Senior Technical Adviser on Downstream and Infrastructure to the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ms. Brenda Ataga, stated this new LPG policy was developed by the Federal Government to deepen the penetration of LPG, also known as cooking gas, and address issues of safety in the use of the commodity.
She disclosed that the Federal Government had already concluded the discussion with two manufacturers to inject 600,000 LPG cylinders into the country, giving the equipment to owners of refilling plant on credit.
Ataga declared that starting from next week when the policy would come into effect with the awareness campaign, illegal and roadside gas sellers would be expected to approach the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, for a permit
She noted that this new LPG policy was developed by the Federal Government to deepen the penetration of LPG, also known as cooking gas, and address issues of safety.
Ataga declared that starting from next week when the policy would come into effect with the awareness campaign, illegal and roadside gas sellers would be expected to approach the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, for a permit, and convert their sales point to Micro Distribution Centres, MDC for the sale of LPG.
She noted that Nigeria is the only country in West Africa yet to adopt the re-circulation model, adding that every other country has moved away from this practice, especially as most of the population cannot afford cylinders and would need the costs of the cylinders removed for them.
She maintained that the Federal Government was looking at licensing about 386,000 MDCs across the country, noting that the clampdown on illegal and roadside LPG sellers would begin next week, in areas that had converted to the MDCs format.
“What is the role of the government? We are here to act as an instigator; to trigger the market for you marketers and catalyze it. Our role really would be putting strategies in place and support the dealers,” Ataga said.
Also speaking, Head of Gas, Abuja Zone of the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, Mr. Umar Gwandu, said the clampdown on illegal roadside sellers of LPG would commence in earnest, noting that the requirements for licensing of MDCs had been reduced to encourage more individuals to venture into the business.
He said the DPR was already working with the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC to ensure full compliance with the laws of the country as regards LPG distribution, while he added that the DPR would commence a campaign to create awareness on the proper handling and distribution of LPG.