TUC Tackles Sylva Over Impending Fuel Price Hike

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TUC Tackles Sylva Over Impending Fuel Price Hike
TUC Tackles Sylva Over Impending Fuel Price Hike
Nwolu Obiajulu

The Trade Union Congress, TUC, has faulted the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, over his comment that Nigerians should get ready for the pain associated with the increase in crude oil price.

The Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry and other critical stakeholders also urged the Federal Government to use rising revenue from crude oil to tackle poverty and drive an all-inclusive growth.

They said this in separate interviews with The Punch on Tuesday while reacting to a statement by Sylva, who earlier alerted Nigerians to expect benefits and pain from the rising price of crude oil in the world market.

Nigeria’s dependence on crude oi for about 50 per cent of government revenues and over 90 per cent of export earnings, rising oil price translates to increased revenue.

However, on the downside, rising oil price also means increased cost of petroleum products as the country depends heavily on imports due to a lack of domestic refining.

Sylva while speaking at the launch of the Nigerian Upstream Cost Optimisation Programme in Abuja said, “Since we are optimising everything, NNPC (Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation) needs to also think about the optimisation of product cost because as we all know oil prices are where they are today: $60.

“As desirable as this is, this has serious consequences as well on product prices. So we want to take the pleasure and we should as a country be ready to take the pain.”

He noted, “The NNPC is taking a big hit from this. We all know that there is no provision in the budget for subsidy. So, somewhere down the line, I believe that the NNPC cannot continue to take this blow. There is no way because there is no provision for it.

“As a country, let us take the benefits of the higher crude oil prices and I hope we will also be ready to take a little pain on the side of higher product prices.”

Recall that landing cost of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, popularly known as petrol, imported into Nigeria had risen by 13.34 per cent to about N180 per litre on Tuesday. The increment came on the heels of the global oil price hike.

This post was written by Nwolu Obiajulu.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.

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