Marketers secure foreign investor support for 30,000 petrol stations

Bisola David
Bisola David
Marketers secure foreign investor support for 30,000 petrol stations

The development of roughly 30,000 petrol outlets across the country has been approved by domestic and foreign investors, oil marketers said on Sunday.

The Punch reported that the Federal Government’s decision to deploy approximately 11,000 vehicles to run on compressed natural gas as part of measures to soften the removal of fuel subsidies led to the conversion of several of the stations to begin dispensing gas.

The National President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Chinedu Okonkwo, stated that the marketers plan to construct about 30,000 petrol stations to mitigate the effects of the removal of fuel subsidies and said that the project’s financiers were responding favourably.

In April of this year, oil marketers wrote to the Federal Government with a proposal to construct nearly 30,000 petrol stations to mitigate the consequences of the removal of subsidies on Premium Motor Spirit, or petrol.

The marketer also requested that the Federal Government order the Central Bank of Nigeria to release the N250 billion intervention fund for the National Gas Expansion Programme as loans to vehicle owners to purchase gas conversion kits in the letter to the Federal Ministry of Finance.

In order to co-locate natural gas dispensers on our network of more than 30,000 filling stations in Nigeria, our partners, Gas Analytics & Solutions Ltd, have an agreement with the independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria.

IPMAN stated in its letter that the collaboration “presents the most cost-effective and expedient platform to deploy the necessary infrastructure to support a fast national roll-out of CNG for vehicles.”

When asked for an update on the project on Sunday, Okonkwo stated that IPMAN was working with its financiers and receiving the required responses.

“Our remedy is something that will be beneficial. You are presently utilizing N5,000 to go a distance that, before covered using PMS, would have required you to spend somewhere between N50,000 and N70,000. As a result, you would have saved more than N50,000, he said.

When asked whether using CNG would allow for such a huge cost reduction, Okonkwo responded, “It is absolutely possible. We are determined to intensify this initiative because of this. Not everyone is eligible to purchase PMS. You decide against moving because of how expensive PMS is right now.

However, the president of IPMAN declined to disclose how much money the association was collecting from its financiers to construct the petrol stations, stating that “nobody throws their business plan open like that.”

When asked if marketers received financial support, Okonkwo responded, “That’s yes, and we are doing what they have asked us to do.”

The president of IPMAN claimed that the government was showing interest in using autogas and expressed hope that merchants would receive the assistance they needed from the government.

“They (government) said they will provide about 11,000 vehicles to run on CNG and they have established a presidential committee for that, so this means they are thinking about it,” Okonkwo said.

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