Ekpo wades into cooking gas supply, price hike challenges

Ekpo wades into cooking gas supply, price hike challenges

By Emmanuella Anokam
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas), Mr Ekperikpe Ekpo, has waded into the challenges of constant price increment of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in the country’s domestic market.

The intervention on LPG (cooking gas) follows the rise in the price of LPG per kg in recent months, from about N700 to above N900 in parts of the country.

“With the exponential increase in the price of LPG, there is the need for the Federal Government to intervene and I am that representative at this moment,” Ekpo said.

A statement issued by Louis Ibah, minister’s Spokesperson after a stakeholders meeting, quoted the Ekpo as mandating a committee headed by Farouk Ahmed, Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Midstream Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), to find a solution within one week.

The meeting had in attendance top officials of Chevron Nigeria Limited led by Sansay Narasimha; NMDPRA, led by its Chief Executive Officer, Farouk Ahmed and the NNPC Ltd.

Ekpo constituted the committee and mandated them to recommend the best way to boost supplies and crash LPG prices.

The minister said that the key challenges identified as responsible for the price increase included FX sourcing for imports and insufficient supply to the domestic market by producers.

He expressed the concerns of President Bola Tinubu over the astronomical increase in the price of cooking gas and the attendant hardship on the majority of citizens.

The minister noted that the increase manifested where some of the multinational firms were more concerned with gas exports without dedicating huge volumes for the domestic market.

This, Ekpo said was unacceptable and should be discouraged since the country had abundant gas reserves.

“We acknowledge that some producers are exporting while we are faced with the challenges of importation.

“Public interest is the overriding interest all over the world for the government and the demand for LPG will increase as we approach December.

“You have a public service obligation to collaborate with the government to ensure security of gas supply.

“We need to therefore bend backwards and find solutions, to ensure that we have sufficient supply and stability in-country and that Nigerians have gas,” said Ekpo.

by Emmanuel Afonne

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