NNPC still major petrol importer

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) remains the major importer of petrol in spite of liberalisation of petroleum products and government intervention to ease marketers’ access to foreign exchange (forex).

The corporation in its latest Monthly Financial and Operations Report said it has been operating in a challenging environment, a situation which limits its aspiration to profitability.

A petroleum ministry official said the corporation supplied more than 70 per cent of fuel consumed in the country and that it was doing so at a loss under the current foreign exchange regime.

The government, earlier in the year, made an intervention for the International Oil Companies (IOCs) to supply forex to oil marketers to import petrol but the marketers have complained, either that they did not have access to forex or got it at costly rate.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) recently conducted special foreign exchange auction aimed at meeting backlog of demand by the marketers.

The NNPC in its report which covered October 2016 operations, said it made a deficit of N16.85 billion as against September, 2016 trading deficit of N17.18 billion.

“Factors that still drag NNPC performances include force majeure declared by SPDC (Shell Nigeria) as a result of the vandalised 48-inch Forcados export line among others,” the report said.

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