Border closure: FG saves N2bn daily from petrol smuggling

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It is said that over 10 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), better known as petrol are being saved due to the ongoing partial border closure ordered by the Federal Government.

The Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), made this staggering disclosure in an interview its spokesman Kimchi Apollo, granted newsmen in Abuja.

Apollo, who is also the General Manager, Corporate Services of PPPRA, said that the agency observed that from the statistics obtained between August 12 and 18, 2019, a drop of about 35 percent in volume trucked out from the previous week was noticed, which could be attributed to the reduction in activities of various facilities during the Sallah holiday.

However, he added that from August 19 to 25, 2019, which falls within the period the borders were partially closed, the agency recorded an average daily truck out figure of about 57 million litres, which fell below the daily average figure for the week 5 to 11 August 2019.

“Similarly, from August 26 to September 1, 2019, 371.82 million litres of petrol was trucked out, averaging a daily figure of 53 million litres. This represents a decline of about four million litres when compared to the previous week.

“Available data from the Agency indicates that the downward trend continued from September 2 to 8. The daily average truck out figure for that week was 50.22 million litres, indicating a further reduction of 2.9 million litres.

“While the downward trend in the consumption pattern is a welcome development, the agency assures stakeholders that efforts are being made not only to curb smuggling of products, but also to ensure that petroleum products are available in the country.”

According to The Guardian, the landing cost of petrol in Nigeria reportedly stands at N180 per litre, that is N35 higher than the pump price of N145 per litre.

It said that when put in context of the landing cost, Nigeria may be saving as much as N1.98b (approximately N2b) daily on account of the PMS, which would have been smuggled out. Similarly, the development translates to about N385m worth of subsidy, which is being lost to neighbouring West African countries daily.

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