The few companies that have been known over the years has importers of diesel and kerosene have stopped importation , a development that ha pushed the pump price of the two products to an all time high of N120 and N100 per litre for diesel and kerosene respectively.
Industry sources confirmed to Shipping Position Weekly that out of the 22 petroleum depots scattered around Lagos, only two; NIPCO and Ibeto are currently loading kerosene while Rahamanniya oil is the only one distributing diesel. In addition, only six out of the 32 that have been engaged in products importation are still actively involved.
Activities were at very low ebb last week when our correspondent visited some of the depots in Apapa.
The implication of this, according to experts is that unless products to come in soonest, there may be scarcity soon.
One of the marketers who spoke to Shipping Position Weekly at Ibeto confirmed that “the scarcity of these products is making everybody to scramble to load and nearly kill themselves here with trucks, some people will buy the kerosene and mix it with diesel why some will buy and sell as kerosene, for almost two weeks now it is only at Ibeto that we are loading kerosene apart from NIPCO”
According to the marketer who craved anonymity, “If eight per cent of the depots can at least receive products, supply would have matched the demand to some extent”. He also confirmed that it is only the petrol that is not yet affected as it is still sold for N65 per litre.
In the face of the scarcity and uncertainty, sources hinted that leading importer of diesel, Zenon Petroleum is set to let out its facility known as Zenon II to African Petroleum (AP) for use for petrol, while it will use the other facility; Zenon I to receive and store diesel.
Zenon petroleum specializes only in imports of diesel and kerosene but the impending scarcity has caused the management to lean on Ibeto by depositing its kerosene in their tank farm and also giving AP its other facility.