The Federal Government has on Thursday said it would crash the price of Petroleum Motor Sport (PMS) by introducing an alternative known as Compromised Natural Gas (CNG) for vehicles across the nation.
CNG can serve the purpose of Petroleum Motor Sport, otherwise known as petrol, and can also be used in place of Liquefied Petroleum Gas and diesel.
Speaking during a press conference held in Abuja, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, said the Petroleum Industry Bill is being worked on, and is expected to be passed before May.
He said that the nation’s oil and gas sector was not comparable to that of other nations as ours was retrogressing.
Sylva also mentioned that the cost of subsidising petrol was having a significant effect on the finances of the Federal Government.
On how the government plans to crash the price of petrol, he said, “When you say we are thinking about reducing the pump price of petrol, I could easily say yes. Why I could say yes is because we are looking at giving the masses an alternative.
“Today, we are using the PMS but what we want to do, going forward, is to see that we are able to move the masses to the CNG. If we take all transport vehicles to the use of the CNG, you would have impacted the poor positively.
“The subsidised rate of the PMS per litre is N145 but the CNG cost between N95 to N97 per litre and that is why I said that we want to reduce the cost of fuel,” he stated.
Sylva stressed that Nigeria has a significant gas reserve which is expected to increase.
“Nigeria’s gas reserve is significant. Nigeria currently has estimated 202TCF (trillion standard cubic feet) of gas, with a projection of 600TCF,” Sylva said.
On the PIB, the minister said, “We are optimistic that both the Petroleum Industry Governance Administration and Host Communities Bill, on the one hand, and the Petroleum Industry Fiscal Bill, on the other hand, will be passed within the first anniversary of the second tenure of this administration.”
He also declared that moves by the Federal Government to recover $62bn from international oil companies were impossible as the money was not sitting anywhere to be harvested by the country.