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Petrol freight rate: More trucks to resume fuel bridging -NARTO

Sequel to the review upward Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) or petrol freight rate by the federal government, the Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO), has said that more trucks would resume fuel bridging across the country to abate fuel scarcity.

According to the association’s President, Alhaji Yusuf Othman, NARTO members are ready to reciprocate government’s gesture.

“It is a very good development and it shows that government is being proactive. It will go a long way in cushioning the effect of the diesel cost on our operations. Like we keep saying, diesel is more than 70 per cent of our operational cost. So it was certain that the high diesel cost would affect our operations. You cannot take products from Lagos to Abuja and other areas while running at a loss.”

He said NARTO members had been struggling to operate, adding that normalcy would soon return to the petroleum products distribution sector with the intervention.

While noting that the government was yet to communicate the new freight rate to marketers and transporters, Othman expressed optimism that the increment would help to reduce operational losses.

He also assured Nigerians that the scarcity of petrol being experienced in Abuja and other parts of the country would soon abate.

“More of our members will resume bridging, which is the transportation of petroleum products from depots to other areas across the country following this development. NARTO members are ready to reciprocate government’s gesture. We are very happy with this timely intervention which is a good development for the industry, ” Othman said.

The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) had in a statement on Thursday said President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the upward review of the freight rate.

The statement said the review was necessitated by the upswing in the global price of petroleum products, especially Automotive Gasoil (Diesel) and its implication on the cost of transporting PMS nationwide.

It said the revised freight rate would take effect from June 1 while still maintaining the current regulated PMS pump price of N165.00 per litre.

“We believe the increase in transporters freight rate will further encourage NARTO and other stakeholders to deploy more trucks to transport PMS nationwide to ensure adequate supply of the product,” the statement said.

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