Major oil marketers in the country have warned that fuel scarcity, currently experienced in Abuja and other major cities, may linger for a while owing to the federal government’s delay in paying what it owes marketers.
The marketers under the auspices of Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) have decried the government’s inability to disburse the outstanding payments due to its members for the import of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) under the Petroleum Subsidy Fund Scheme (the “Scheme”).
The association, through its Executive Secretary, Mr Thomas Olawore, wrote the Honourable Minister of Finance/Coordinating Minister of the Economy Dr Mrs Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, where it stated that despite previous assurances from the government to reimburse marketers the Under Recovery due to them as verified by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), the government has till date failed to honour its agreement.
“At the previous meeting, you empathised with the marketers and committed to full restitution provided these were verified by the Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA). You also assured marketers that they would be fully reimbursed for the interest (incurred due to the late payment) and foreign exchange (Forex) differential elements of their Under Recovery within thirty (30) days of the meeting.
“Furthermore, you committed to immediately issuing Sovereign Debt Notes (SDNs) for the outstanding Under Recovery with full payment on or before April 28, 2015.
“Regrettably, despite your above commitment and assurances, the industry to date has only received approximately N30 billion in Forex differential claims out of the N100 billion owed. In the same vein, only N345 billion has been received in core subsidy payments covering payments up to Q2, 2014.
“Specifically only 3 companies out of the 6 MOMAN companies received payments for Forex differentials and no company, MOMAN or DAPPMA (Depot and Petroleum Products Marketing Association) has been paid interest charges on delayed payments,” the letter read.
It also noted that as at March 31, 2015, the total amount due to the marketers based on all claims verified by the PPPRA is in the region of N270 billion but only N200 billion was earmarked for them in the 2015 budget, this according to MOMAN constituted a “great cause of concern” for its members.