Months after the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) accredited some tank farms in Lagos for the use of their storage facilities and jetties, there are indications that, the measure which was aimed at stemming the tide of scarcity may have failed.
Operators of the downstream sector have pointed out that there is acute shortage of vessels to bring the products into the jetties located in Apapa and that the sector requires more than just few tank farms.
There are confirmations that the scarcity that is currently noticeable in different parts of the country is attributable to inadequate supply from the tank farms.
Officials of some of the accredited outlets by the NNPC complained last week that there is remarkable difference in the rate at which products are supplied to them now compared to how it was when importers were allowed to import products directly.
Shipping Position Weekly in a chat with the depot manager of Rahamaniyya Oil and Gas; one of the accredited tank farms, Mr. Bala Danmanu in Lagos confirmed that though the products have been coming but it has not been constant because of availability of vessels to help bring the product.
“We have been receiving the products from NNPC through the PPMC as agreed, but it cannot be compared to before, sometimes it is due to lack of enough vessels on our part, there are not enough vessels to bring in these product to the tank farms” he said.
Bala went further to say that for now, the only product that the NNPC has arranged to distribute through the depot is the PMS, stating that there are plans underway to include the AGO (diesel) and also the DPK (kerosene) soon, a development which will further make NNPC the sole distributor of the products in the country.
Meanwhile, Shipping Position Weekly also gathered in another conversation with a top manager of one of the non- accredited tank farms that since the involvement of the NNPC in the supply of fuel in the country through some outlets, others have backed out.
Our source at the tank farm added that “for now we deal only on the other petroleum products but by next year, we intend to get back to selling PMS and we will be getting it indirectly through these accredited outlets” he said.
He went further to say that the products from the accredited outlets are being used mainly to supply the eastern and northern regions of the country.