The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited has introduced a N500,000 Ship-to-Ship Coordination Charge for each transshipment operation for Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, involving the NNPC Marine Logistics.
It was gathered on Monday that this charge on any transshipment operation was part of moves by the NNPC to fully recover its operational cost since the recently passed Petroleum Industry Act had made the national oil firm a limited liability company.
The NNPC’s cost recovery drive through the new transshipment charge, it was learnt, made depot owners to raise the ex-depot price of petrol, a development that has forced marketers to increase the PMS price above the approved cost of N142-N145/litre.
It was gathered on Monday that the cost of petrol might hit or exceed N180/litre in most filling stations in coming weeks if nothing was done about the hike in its ex-depot price by depot owners. The approved pump price of petrol currently is N162-N165/litre.
Most private depot owners recently raised the ex-depot price of petrol from the approved N142-N145/litre price to between N162 and N170/litre.
This made many filling stations owned by independent marketers to dispense petrol above the approved price, as they stated that the cost of the commodity would exceed N180/litre in most retail outlets soon, except in mega stations and those owned by major marketers.
Independent oil marketers in Nigeria operate about 90 per cent of the filling stations across the country.