NNPC Clarifies Stance Amidst Petrol Price Hike Speculations: No Plans for Increase
NNPC Denies Speculations of Petrol Price Hike
In response to the growing apprehension over a potential increase in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) has issued a statement clarifying its stance on the matter.
In an official announcement shared via its social media platform, posted at approximately 11:48 PM on Monday, the state-owned oil corporation emphasized its commitment to maintaining stable petrol prices for consumers. As the foremost importer of petrol into Nigeria, the NNPCL reassured its customers that it had no intention of raising the pump price of PMS.
The official statement from the company read: “Dear valued patrons, at NNPCL Retail, your loyalty is highly cherished. We wish to categorically state that we are not considering any upward adjustment of PMS pump prices, as has been widely speculated. We encourage you to purchase top-quality products at the most competitive rates from our extensive network of NNPCL Retail stations across the nation.”
NNPCL Retail functions as the downstream subsidiary of the NNPCL, responsible for distributing refined petroleum products within the group.
This declaration comes amidst concerns expressed by oil marketers on Sunday, indicating that petrol prices could surge to approximately N680 per litre to N720 per litre in the upcoming weeks, should the value of the Nigerian naira continue to depreciate against the US dollar in the parallel market.
The oil marketers also cited challenges in securing foreign exchange, which has hindered plans to import PMS, leaving dealers grappling with uncertainty. They highlighted the shortage of foreign currency as a substantial factor driving potential price increases. Notably, the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Importers and Exporters’ official foreign exchange window, which boasts a more favorable exchange rate, has struggled to provide the necessary funds for the importation of PMS by dealers.
Our attempts to clarify the matter with NNPCL’s spokesperson, Garba-Deen Muhammad, on Monday yielded no immediate response. However, the company chose to address the situation by posting their official statement on their social media platform, X (formerly known as Twitter), during the late hours of Monday night.
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) also weighed in on the matter, issuing a warning that it would initiate a nationwide strike without prior notice if petrol marketers proceeded to raise prices without first concluding ongoing negotiations. Joe Ajaero, President of the NLC, urged the Federal Government to take measures to stabilize the value of the naira, emphasizing the importance of protecting consumers from the economic repercussions of an abrupt price hike.
In the wake of the removal of fuel subsidies earlier in May, organized labor had previously attempted to stage a strike in response to soaring costs of goods and services. However, the Federal Government secured a court injunction from the National Industrial Court, preventing the labor unions from proceeding with their strike action.
As the Nigerian economy navigates challenging economic conditions, the NNPC’s announcement offers a glimmer of reassurance to consumers concerned about potential increases in petrol prices, while the broader economic context continues to unfold.