As the struggle to get Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise called petrol mounts, it has been estimated that Nigerians guzzled 2,020,248,000 litres of the product and spent at least N333.34 billion at the official retail pump price on it in one month. Observers have, however, queried the figures.
This week, petrol scarcity was more pronounced across Lagos, Abuja and other parts of the country leading to a hike in transport fares across states. While some marketers blamed diesel hike on freight cost to lift the product, some others blamed NNPC Limited for cutting the daily quota to marketers from about 103 million to 65m in the last two weeks, after the government agency suspected a higher rate of product smuggling.
At the moment, various stations sell the product above the N165 official pump price with the rate reaching N200 in some states. However, at the official N165/litre rate, consumers in Nigeria would have paid N333.34bn (N333,340,920,000) for the 28-day supply of petrol to the markets.
This was in just 28 days, between 21st March and 17th April, according to Daily Trust analysis of petrol loading and distribution data obtained from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) and the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Authority (NMDPRA).
At a standard 33,000-litre capacity per petrol tanker, that would mean 61,220 units of tankers conveyed the product to the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).