Reps working to include downstream stakeholders on NNPCL board


The House of Representatives says it is working on plans to amend the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) to include downstream stakeholders on the board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited(NNPCL).

The Chairman of the House Committee on Petroleum Downstream, Rep. Ugo Chinyere (PDP-Imo) said this when he briefed newsmen after a stakeholders meetings on Friday in Abuja.

He said that the meeting was to  find permanent solutions to reoccurring strikes by the National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) and Petroleum Product Retail Outlet Owner of Nigeria (PETRON).

He said that the aim was to ensure efficient distribution of energy to ensure availability, stability and affordable.

National growth LS

“And also, were agreed to consult further on the issue of amending Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) to provide room for inclusion of stakeholders in the downstream sector, petroleum distribution and retailing chain in the board of NNPCL so that they can be part of those decision making process.

“So that they will be able to resolve challenges when they come up without us waiting for warning a strike before stakeholders can come together and start tackling it.

“And also the committee agreed with NARTO and PETRON to find sustainable solution to the present challenges facing the petroleum product distribution and retail outlets owner to avert any further strike or disruption of the supply or retail channel.

“The committee agreed with NARTO and PETRON for an all inclusive meeting with leadership of the National Assembly, regulators and other key stakeholders to tackle issues of multiple charges, shall practices and rising costs of transportation to help achieve sustainable and affordable product distribution and pricing system,” he said.

Chinyere said that the committee would investigate alleged sharp practice by retail owners in the supply of petroleum products.

The lawmaker said that the committee would also investigate causes of poor functioning of pipelines and refineries in the country.

Earlier, the NARTO Board Chairman, Alhaji Kassim Bataiya, said that the association was not happy with the developments in the petroleum industry.

He said that the establishment of the association became necessary following the failure to sustain the nations pipelines to distribute petroleum products.

He said that since the enactment of the PIA and removal of subsidy, efforts to get markers negotiate new rates with transporters had not been successful.

“It is for this reason, we find it very difficult to operate after nobody listening to negotiate with us, we have no option other than to pack the trucks and wait for further intervention.

“Let me give you a typical example; we are paid N30 per litre to lift Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) from Lagos to NNPC depot in Suleja.

“N30 per liter for 40,000 litres is N1.2 million and the truck consume a minimum of 900 litres of diesel at N1500 per liter, which is about N1.4 50 million.

“In addition, the N1.3 million freight rate is subject to 5 per cent withholding tax deducted and payable to the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) which would be shared to the three tiers of governments,” he said.

He said that transporters were faced with high cost of spare parts as a result of exchange rate fluctuations, lack of access to forex for spare parts, high cost vehicle maintenance, bad roads and insecurity.(NAN)

By EricJames Ochigbo

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