NMDPRA urges NARTO to ensure petroleum availability in yuletide season

Oredola Adeola

…vows to continue bridging payment gap on PMS

The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), has appealed to National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO), to ensure availability of Petrol (Premium Motor Spirit) throughout the festive period, promising to process claims for bridging of PMS to ensure product availability nationwide even after the signing of the Petroleum Industry Act(PIA).

Chief Executive, NMDPRA, Engr. Farouk Ahmed, made this known when delegates from the National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) paid a courtesy call on the management team of the agency on Thursday in Abuja.

The NMDPRA CEO said the it was aware of the fact that the signing of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA, 2021), leading to the creation of the NMDPRA may have raised some uncertainty regarding the continuation of the bridging scheme; whether or not bridging funds will continue to be paid to beneficiaries.

He stressed further that NARTO as well as other stakeholders should not panic because all verified bridging obligations will be honoured and paid by the agency.

Corroborating the position of the NMDPRA CEO, Mr Ogbugo Ukoha, the Executive Director, Distributions System, Storage and Retail Infrastructure, NMDPRA, urged NARTO to continue to be patriotic and ensure that it plays its part in ensuring PMS availability throughout the yuletide period, regardless of its current challenges.

The National President, NARTO, Alhaji Yusuf Othman, in reaction to the statement of the Engr. Ahmed charged the NMDPRA to help NARTO with the outstanding payments being owed its members by the Federal Government.

The NARTO President lamented that the business of transporting PMS, is no longer profitable, adding that some members of the association are losing interest in the entire system. He however appealed for the upward review of the bridging funds on the pricing template.

He urged the federal government to put in place policies that will not only address the current dwindling returns on investment but will in addition, stimulate investment in the transportation and logistics of petroleum products in the country