Petroleum marketers have mulled the possibility of hiking the price of fuel following the naira’s continued drop against the dollar.
The naira has in recent days, witnessed its lowest drop as it traded between ₦900 and ₦945 per dollar.
Before subsidy removal, oil marketers lamented about their inability to access dollars for fuel import as the task of importing fuel was solely left to the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL).
In order to access the money needed for fuel import, oil dealers had hoped to approach the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN’s Importers and Exporters (I&E) official window for foreign exchange, which boasts of a lower exchange rate of about $740 per dollar.
The dealers have, however, claimed the I&E window is unable to provide the required amount for the importation of PMS.
The marketers then predicted that if the exchange rate remained unstable and a dollar still traded for between ₦910 to ₦950 at the parallel market, there was a possibility that the cost of PMS would rise to between ₦680 per litre and ₦720 per litre in the coming weeks.
This was because a continued drop in the value of the naira against the dollar would further increase the landing cost of fuel and also, directly increase the ex-depot price of the commodity thus further increasing the fuel pump price.
“I still maintain that since we are still importing petroleum products into this country, it has to do with forex. And once it has to do with forex, it means that so much naira will be chasing a few dollars.
“And since we don’t have the influx of dollars into Nigeria, the after effect is that the landing cost of petrol will continue to increase as long as the dollar continues to rise,” Chief Chinedu Ukadike, the National Public Relations Officer, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, (IPMAN), stated.
The presidency has, however, insisted that there would be no increment in fuel pump prices.
“Mr President wishes to assure Nigerians following the announcement by the NNPC Limited on Monday that there will be no increase in the pump price of PMS anywhere in the country. We repeat, the President affirms that there will be no increase in the pump price of PMS,” Ajuri Ngelale, the presidential spokesperson noted.