Gas station prices could fall further between N5 and N8 per litre, downstream operators said.
According to oil traders, the fall in crude oil prices justified the recent rise in gasoline prices by the Oil Price Regulatory Agency.
They found that if other operators joined the National Petroleum Product Corporation in Nigeria to begin importing products, the current price of PMS could drop even further from N123.5 / litre to N125 / litre.
However, senior officials from the Independent Association of Petroleum Traders in Nigeria and the Association of Petroleum Product Owners in Nigeria noted that this would happen if every downstream importer accessed the dollar at the same rate as the NNPC. .
The Chairperson of IPMAN’s Supervisory Board, who is also the group’s managing director, Nipco Plc, Aminu Abdulkadir, said the price range for gasoline will narrow because crude oil prices remain low.
Abulkadir, who said this in a television interview that had been seen by our correspondent in Abuja, noted that PPPRA would always give records because the price of goods was not determined.
He said, “Dealing with pump products is something that is not definite and that is why the PPPRA provides a band. A band is a range.
“Today, as the price is at N123.5/litre, I believe that by the time the market is totally free for marketers to import on their own, the band could still come lower than what it is by at least N5 to N8.”
On whether PPPRA would still determine the price of petrol for all dealers, he stated that the agency would mainly be saddled with the duty of providing a price band.
The IPMAN boss observed that the fluctuation in global crude oil prices would cause changes in petrol price in Nigeria.
Abdulkadir said, “They (PPPRA) will always partake in determining a band and not to give a fixed price. As the price of crude oil increases, the price of petroleum products will also increase but not as sharply as in an under-deregulated market.
“Different filling stations will sell at different prices and that is the essence of freeing the market. Definitely you will not get a fixed price but as the deregulation matures, the difference in the prices of retail outlets will not be up to N1.
He added, “By the time the industry understands the deregulation very well, you will find out that the difference between one retail outlet and the other will not be more than 50k to 80k because efficiency will come to play.”
On his part, the National President, PETROAN, Billy Gillis-Harry, told our correspondent that marketers would also want to see policy stability as the downstream sector sets for full deregulation.
Gillis-Harry, who admitted that petrol price would drop in a fully deregulated market, canvassed the domestic refining of petroleum products as against the massive dependence on imports.
He further noted that it was important for marketers to have access to loans in order to ensure the availability of products in all geographical zones of Nigeria to drive economic development.