The ongoing scarcity of petroleum products across the country may continue till February 2016, indications have emerged. Despite receiving N413 billion in subsidy claims from the government, petroleum marketers have reportedly suspended fresh importation of petroleum products. Some marketers who spoke on the issue noted that the alleged plan by the Federal Government to remove subsidy on petrol next year and commence full deregulation by January 1, is already unsettling them. The marketers said, although they are in full support of the deregulation of the downstream sector, deregulation must be planned for, adding that they must be put into consideration.
A source said "Nigerians are not considering the vagaries involved in deregulation. There are speculations that with deregulation, a litre of petrol would sell for N97, which is a possibility on one hand. But considering the current price of crude oil which sells for about $38 per barrel, what if this price slides further in the weeks to come and the permutation declines to less than N87 for a litre, who bears the loss?” The source added that all these uncertainties have further contributed to the persistent fuel scarcity.