The President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government has denied reports of an imminent increase in pump price of fuel.
Speaking to journalists on Tuesday after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Maikanti Baru, said the federal government has no plans to increase fuel price contrary to viral reports of looming hike in price of petrol.
Baru who disclosed that President Buhari had given no such directive, said; “I have not been directed to increase pump price. Even the other price was based on recommendation from the regulated body.
“I am not aware that they are planning to do any increase. You know there are several factors that necessitated that, especially the issue of exchange rate that has moved, and we don’t expect any serious changes,” he said.
The existing template used by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), was benchmarked at N285 to the dollar, which is currently not feasible, following the new foreign exchange policy, and Baru insisted that the federal government has been able to meet its forex demand for the importation of petrol.
“So far, the request for forex for importation of gasoline — popularly called petrol — has been met, and our own supply situation is robust; we are meeting demands.
“We have over 1.4 billion litres on ground, so I don’t see any basis for increase. However, the review could be done by the right body. You should contact PPPRA, that is the regulatory body as far as petrol pricing is concern,”he said.
Baru said since the federal government liberalised the downstream sector, private sector players have taken over, and they are operating based on demand and supply.