Subsidy removal: DPR clarifies position on petrol pricing, says CEO ‘was quoted out of context’

Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has said that comments credited to its Director and Chief Executive Officer, Sarki Auwalu, regarding subsidy removal were lifted out of context, as it further clarified that the price increase can only rise if the commodity is ‘subjected to prevailing market forces.’

Director, DPR, Mr Sarki Auwalu

An online publication had quoted Auwalu as stating that the price of premium motor spirit (PMS) could rise up to N1,000/litre upon the subsidy removal without alternative energy.

However, reacting to the said publication, Head, Public Affairs DPR, Paul Osu, in a statement made available to Oracle Today, described the report as ‘misleading,’ as, according to him Auwalu’s position was ‘clearly taken out of context.’

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“Our attention has been drawn to the misinterpretation of the comments made by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) regarding subsidy removal.

“This follows an online publication stating that the price of PMS could rise up to N1,000/litre upon the subsidy removal without alternative energy.

“We wish to state that the headline of the publication is misleading as the comments of the Director/CEO DPR was clearly taken out of context.

“The Director/CEO specifically created a scenario of price instability of PMS based on current dollar to naira differentials to the effect that if Nigeria continues to rely on the importation of PMS without creating alternative energy sources like CNG, LNG, AUTOGAS and others which will provide price buffers for consumers and ultimately crash the price of PMS, then the product will be subject to prevailing market forces.

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“The Director further reemphasized that the strategy for alternative energy sources is a cardinal programme of the government which has led to the declaration of the Decade of Gas (DoG) with the objective to migrate the Nigerian economy to a gas based economy by 2030.

“The Department hereby restates that we will continue to enable businesses and create opportunities through our downstream focus on Quality, Quantity, Integrity and safety (QQIS),” the statement read.

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