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Nigeria subsidy debate holds up Q4 gasoline imports

by Business News Report

Nigeria’s fuel import allocations for the fourth quarter are being delayed as National Assembly debates the removal of subsidies and as fuel held in offshore floating storage surges to record levels, trade sources said.
Nigeria is Africa’s top oil exporter but insufficient refining capacity means it relies on fuel imports, mostly petrol, for up to 85 per cent of its oil product needs. About half of the country’s yearly petrol needs are imported through swap exchanges arranged by a subsidiary of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), according to traders. The other half is organised independently through deals with Nigeria-based distributors.
The National Assembly debate about subsidies and an excess supply of petrol stored offshore have put a spanner in the allocation talks for this quarter, traders said, which could drag on into next year. “These allocations should have been out by October or mid-October but they’re not out still,” one trader said. “There are two key things being looked at – the deregulation talks and the oversupply currently in the market.”

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