- A defence has been made for the federal government's decision to increase petrol price to N143.8 per litre
- The defence was given by the minister of state for petroleum, Timipreye Sylva
- Sylva said that the government did not at any time promise Nigerians of keeping the price of petrol low permanently
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Timipreye Sylva, minister of state for petroleum, on Thursday, July 9, gave a defence for the recent increase of pump price by the federal government.
Sylva in a statement on Thursday pointed out that the federal government's inability to attract enough investments into the country has been a great burden of fuel subsidy, AIT reports.
The minister said that following painstaking study of the economics of the subsidising the petrol, it was discovered and thus concluded that it was unrealistic to keep up with the trend.
Arguing that the government did not at any time agree to leave the pump price permanently low, Sylva stated that the administration is working hard to alleviate the pain of Nigerians through the auto-gas scheme, which will help citizens with alternative sources of fuel at a lower cost.
He noted: “Government will continue to play its role of regulation; to ensure that this strategic commodity is not priced arbitrarily by private sector suppliers; a regulatory function not unlike the role played by the Central Bank of Nigeria in the banking sector; ensuring that commercial banks do not charge arbitrary interest rates.”
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that Nigerians might witness another hike in retail price for petrol as the Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) had recommended an upward review from N121.50. The agency recommended that a litre of petrol should be sold between N140.80 and N143.80.
The agency in a statement wrote: “After a review of the prevailing market fundamentals in the month of June and considering marketers’ realistic operating costs, as much as practicable, we wish to advise a new PMS pump price band of N140.80 – N143.80/litre for the month of July 2020.”
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