Zarama Mustapha, the Deputy President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), has stated that the price of fuel in Nigeria cannot go below N500 per litre. In an interview with Channels TV, Mustapha explained that this is due to the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited being the sole importer of refined oil into the country.
His remarks came after the NNPC increased the fuel price on Wednesday, raising it to N500 per litre and above from the previous N189 per litre. The increase was implemented following President Bola Tinubu’s acceptance of the recommendation by his predecessor, Muhammadu Buhari, to phase out fuel subsidies.
Mustapha highlighted that the NNPC still regulates the fuel price in Nigeria because it has a monopoly on fuel imports. However, he noted that when other companies are allowed to import fuel, competitive prices will be introduced.
Currently, Mustapha revealed that fuel is sold to oil marketers at N460 per litre at fuel depots, but the pump price rises to N500 per litre after factoring in transportation costs and profit margins.
“The NNPC being the sole supplier is the determiner of how much we purchase. The deregulation is just taking effect. Maybe with time, they will allow other players to also participate in the importation of the product to compete with the NNPC Limited,” Mustapha stated during the interview.