On Tuesday morning, NNPC Limited, a subsidiary of the Federal Government, abruptly increased the price of petrol at the pump from N537 to N617 in Abuja.
After the downstream sector of Nigeria’s oil and gas business was deregulated, the national oil corporation has not given any explanation for the most recent price hike.
However, according to Vanguard’s investigations, each operator is permitted, under the current deregulation, to adjust prices in accordance with its cost components.
It also demonstrated how pressure from the depreciating value of the Naira has been placed on large and independent traders as well as gasoline importers like NNPC Limited.
As the price increase spreads to other cities, including Lagos and its surrounds, where some gas stations have modified their pumps to above N600 per litre, Vanguard’s checks revealed that many drivers and others have hurried to buy petrol.
Commenting on the development, the national operations controller, of the Independent Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, Mike Osatuyi, said: “It is not about the NNPC Limited. It is about the market fundamentals. Every marketer stands alone with its different cost elements. The low value of the Naira is currently impacting the market. It is now more than N800 to a dollar.
“This is why the market is responding this way. It has to spread because as operators, our price depends on our cost.
“Even though some importers have been able to import the product, it cannot be cheap because it is based on the current market fundamentals, especially foreign exchange. The public should also know that importers source their foreign exchange from the banks at the current rate. “