The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has said that the emergence of fuel queue in Lagos may not be unconnected with inadequacy of supply.
It therefore urged the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to step up import of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) also known as petrol to avert another round of scarcity.
The call is coming as vehicles now queue to get the product at dispensing outlets which is a sign that another round of scarcity is imminent.
Mike Osatuyi, national controller of the association disclosed that the fuel situation has been poorly distributed since the NNPC is the sole importer of the product.
“There is supply gap over a period of time now, the NNPC imports 78 percent of the petrol need of the country. I can only say you should tell them to improve on the import.
They do the SWAP deal and therefore they are not constrained by FOREX challenge, but for marketers it is difficult to source the Dollar and therefore not profitable to import under present condition”, he said.
On whether the marketers have products, Osatuyi said, “if we have we will sell. If you observe any scarcity now it means the supply has really gone down but let us watch the situation up to this weekend and then we will know how to react to it, but NNPC should take up the responsibility to beef supply”.
Meanwhile some filling stations within the metropolis are experiencing difficulty dealing with queues that have started building up.
Some of them have actually run out of stock, take for instance, Mobil filling station at Maryland this afternoon shut down its pumps and blocked the entrance and exit points at the station.
Also, another major marketers outlet, Oando is dealing with a large number of motorists struggling to buy the product.
The queue was also much visible at Total outlet by Sheraton hotel Ikeja, while at MRS, Ikeja attendants sold product in the morning but later shut down in the day forcing motorists to turn to Conoil opposite the general hospital, Ikeja.
Attendants at some of the stations could not offer explanation as to the reason for the shut down.
Oriental News Nigeria, reported that about thirty vessels with petroleum products, food items and other goods are expected to arrive Apapa and Tin-Can Island Ports in Lagos to boost supply across the country.
The delivery of the products are expected between this week up to February 24.
According to the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) publication `Shipping Position’, the expected ships contained buck wheat, bulk salt, containers, steel products, gypsum, Rubber Tyred Gantry (GTR) cranes, base oil, petrol, kerosene and diesel.
The document noted that nine other ships had arrived the ports, waiting to berth with petrol and containers.
Also, 16 other ships are at the ports discharging buck wheat, general cargoes, soda ash, bulk rice, buthane, containers, base oil and petrol.