Gas retailers have issued a warning that the price of a 12.5kg cooking gas cylinder may skyrocket to N18,000 by December if the Federal Government does not take measures to curb the activities of terminal owners.
Olatunbosun Oladapo, the President of the Nigerian Association of Liquefied Petroleum Gas Marketers, expressed concerns on Sunday about the steep rise in the cost of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), commonly known as cooking gas, at terminals. He cited a sudden increase in prices from a range of N9-N10 million per 20 metric tons to N14 million per 20 metric tons.
Oladapo stated, “There is an alarming surge in gas prices at the moment, and I’m afraid that unless the Federal Government intervenes to regulate the activities of these terminal owners, prices could reach as high as N18 million per metric ton by December. This means that a 12.5kg cylinder could cost as much as N18,000.”
He went on to assert that terminal owners were exploiting the excuse of high foreign exchange rates to further burden the masses with inflated prices.
According to Oladapo, there is no valid justification for this price hike, as the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (NLNG) continues to supply the market.
He explained, “NNPCL currently takes 59 percent of the gas produced by NLNG, although NLNG has also increased its price from N6 million to N8 million. Now, because NLNG has raised its prices, NNPCL and terminal owners have followed suit by increasing prices to N14 million.”
Oladapo highlighted that the impending price increase was not the fault of retailers but rather attributed to NLNG and terminal owners. He noted that the price of 1kg of gas had risen from N800 to N1,200 in a week, potentially reaching N1,500 by December if not addressed promptly.
This surge in gas prices has forced many low-income earners to turn to alternative cooking methods like firewood and charcoal.
Oladapo also expressed disappointment in promises made by stakeholders during a recent meeting with President Tinubu, where they pledged to collaborate for the betterment of the populace. He questioned the whereabouts of the promised palliatives and buses for donation, which have yet to materialize.
While gas terminal owners did not have a visible association, representatives from NavGas and Nipco Plc attributed the price hike to challenges related to foreign exchange and fluctuations in the international crude oil market. However, there were conflicting reports regarding the actual selling price at terminals, with some disputing the N1,200/kg figure.