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Indication has emerged that contrary to claims of yesteryears by government agencies that Nigeria consumes certain number of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol either on a daily basis or yearly has been mere speculation.
The scenario has therefore become a drainpipe by agencies and officials who had been in the know in cooking data that do not exist.
This revelation came to the fore following a new move by the Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF) and the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) to jointly carrying out an extensive research and survey aimed at ascertaining Nigeria’s daily consumption figure for the product.
It would be recalled that during last administration, issues in fuel importation and allied subsidy scams nearly collapsed the economy as scammers were in the habit of turning around in the high seas only to come back with empty vessels to lay claims to subsidy fund which many of them got and ran away, but some were caught.
According to the agencies also say the research may extend to other petroleum products as it has become imperative to accurately know what was spent on importation, cost of bridging/equalisation and the likely impact of the proposed deregulation of the product on the country.
Details gathered by Business Hilights in Abuja on Wednesday also indicated that the new survey will also determine the consumption volume on a state by state basis.
Within the studies, other related vital information that will help the government in planning and budgeting for the petroleum sector will be gathered.
Earlier hint of the plan was made by the Executive Secretary, PEF, Ahmed Bobboi during a meeting with members of the PEF-NBS Joint Committee on the research project in Abuja.
Giving credence to the new idea which analysts say is belated, the Statistician-General of the Federation, Dr. Yemi Kale, commended the PEF boss for the initiative, saying “We are in a period where the entire world is talking about accurate data in all forms. We do not need assumptions. Accuracy helps us plan and make projections”.
“That is why you see that big countries like USA, Germany, China and all others are big and passionate about data. It is gaining momentum here in Nigeria too.
“So, for the PEF boss to insist on data, it means he wants to improve the country. It is a commitment to Nigeria. The work on the strategy of the assignment was thoroughly done. I went through the plans and methodology. This is the first time in the history of the country that an actual attempt to solve problems of data on PMS consumption is being made. We only based our reports on estimates,” Kale stated.
Industry observers who barred their minds on the development welcomed it and noted that it was belated. Some experts called for sack of some officials of the relevant agencies who had failed over the years to build such a strategic planning data.
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