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Kachikwu Chides Nnpc

Source: thewillnigeria.com

BEVERLY HILLS, November 07, (THEWILL) – The Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has carpeted NNPC over the N4 increase in price of petrol sold at its mega-filling stations.

Kachikwu, speaking at an event organised by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) in Abuja, declared it was wrong for the oil firm to do so.

Reports show that NNPC had been selling fuel at N141, but it jerked the price by N4, on November 3, to match the government's benchmark of N145.

“First, I am not aware that the NNPC has increased price. I need to look into that. It is a bit of surprise for me, because there are processes in doing this,” he said.

“If they have done that, it means they are doing it wrongly. Let me find out what the facts are.

“Having said that, the reality is that what we did at the point where we did some liberalisation was to enable the free market float the price.

“Obviously, as you look at forex differentiations and all that, it would impact. The worst thing you could do is to go back to an era where we basically were fixing prices.

“What we ought to be doing was watching the prices, making sure that they are not taking advantage of the common man; making sure that the template is respected.

“One of the things I think we had hoped to do, which we should still do before we embark on any price increase, is to work on those templates.

“Those who are investing must be able to predict the pricing methodologies, the pricing consequences and the actions, so as to be able to justify their investments.

“At the end of the day, I think PPPRA is the one that has the authority to say it is time the template justified some level of movement, otherwise, you have a crisis of individual decisions on pricing.”

Story by Oputah David