Oil marketers have diverted about 800 trucks from PMS duty to gas transportation since FG’s announcement to remove the subsidy was enacted.
The trucks which were earlier used to move Premium Motor Spirit, PMS across the country have now been converted to be used for transporting Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) to filling stations in order to service vehicles that run on gas.
The National President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Chinedu Okonkwo said some petroleum marketers had turned to dispensing gas from their stations as well as the collocation of gas in their outlets.
Speaking further, he said “Some of my members have started signing up to dispense gas at their stations, as well as the collocation of gas in their outlets. One of the major independent marketers has given over 500 of his trailers for conversion to transport gas to filling stations.”
“There are some new tankers too, over 300 of them have also indicated interest to have CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) trucks. These trucks are to serve filling stations that would be dispensing gas to vehicles.” Okonkwo explained.
Petroleum marketers have lamented the huge resources which come with purchasing petroleum products since the subsidy removal announcement was made.
According to the IPMAN president, marketers have been requested by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) to make additional payments of as high as ₦14 million for products they never received before the subsidy was removed.
This development has pushed most of them to look for alternative business ventures thus the move to CNG trade. The use of CNG by the FG has been in the works due to its cheaper nature and also, because it is abundant and cleaner with fewer effects on the environment.
The NNPCL puts Nigeria’s gas reserves at an estimated 206 trillion cubic feet which makes it the 9th largest in the world. The FG, in its resolve to leverage the vast gas resources in the country, had also declared a decade of gas to encourage the usage of gas for automobile use as well as for domestic purposes.
The idea was accompanied by the launch of a scheme by the immediate past government in 2020 which was aimed at converting over one million vehicles from running on PMS to gas as a means to end the reliance on petrol to power cars.
The current administration further gave backing to the idea after the recent meeting between the Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria and President Bola Tinubu at the State House.
The petroleum marketers had met with the president to resolve the crisis generated by the recent subsidy removal and had offered to provide 100 units of CNG/diesel-powered, 50-seater buses to ease mobility among the most vulnerable citizens.