By Obas Esiedesa
Despite the deregulation of the downstream sector of the petroleum industry, petroleum products marketers do not have the power to arbitrary fix the pump price of petrol “as they deem fit”, the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) has clarified.
The agency in a statement by its Executive Secretary, Abdulkadir Saidu,
released on Sunday, said reports that there was no more price cap guiding the sale of petrol in the country was misconceived.
Saidu explained that PPPRA would continue to release monthly guide on the pricing of the product in line with the regulation on the market-based pricing regime it published.
According to him, “the published regulation does not confer on marketers the power to fix prices for the product as they deem fit, but rather guiding prices would be advised by the PPPRA according to market realities.
“The agency shall monitor market trends and advise the NNPC and Oil Marketing Companies on the monthly market-based guiding price, which shall include the indicative retail price at which the product shall be sold across the country” he added.
He stressed that government would will continue to monitor the price of petroleum products and advise on monthly guiding prices that guarantee reasonable returns to operators while ensuring consumers pay appropriate prices in line with market reality and are not overcharged.
“For the avoidance of doubt, it is instructive to state that no private individual or group, has the mandate to fix prices of petroleum products, however the statutory regulatory body is saddled with the responsibility of advising guiding prices.
“Suffice to say that in a deregulated market, the role of a regulator in monitoring and regulating activities in the sector cannot be over-emphasized” he stated.