The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) and some other stakeholders have supported the removal of fuel subsidy.
According to them, the removal will benefit the nation’s economy in the long run. They agreed that the crash in the price of crude oil in the international market had provided the government the opportunity to stop subsidising the product.
Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Mele Kyari had on Monday said the era of fuel subsidy was gone forever in Nigeria.
“There would be no resort to either fuel subsidy or under-recovery of any nature. NNPC will play in the petroleum marketplace, just like another marketer in the space. But we will be there for the country to sustain the security of supply at market price,” Kyari had said in the programme aired by Africa Independent Television (AIT).
Meanwhile, the President of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Mr. Chinedu Okoronkwo, said the removal of fuel subsidy would allow more investors to come into the sector.
He said: “This is what we have been asking the government to do because there is really no need for government to be subsidising fuel annually with a huge amount of money.
“With the removal of subsidy, more modular refineries will come up. We already have Dangote Refinery in Lagos which will soon start operations.
“Also the Waltersmith Modular Refinery in Ibigwe, Imo State, is almost near completion. This means we won’t need to be refining our crude oil outside the country.
“The government should let the market forces determine the price, going forward and allow the private sector to be involved in the process.”
Also, Mr. Wilson Opuwei, an oil and gas expert, said while the removal of fuel subsidy was good, it should, however, not be a knee-jerk reaction by the government.
Opuwei, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Dateline Energy Services Ltd, said there should be a timeline and also eligibility criteria to determine those who would participate in the process.