Nigerians are currently experiencing the impact of the removal of fuel subsidies, as fuel prices have surged to over N550 per litre. The ex-depot price of petrol has increased by 4.3% to N490 per litre, leading to corresponding price hikes at petrol stations. Some fuel stations in Lagos are now selling petrol for more than N500 per litre, a significant rise from the previous price of N488 per litre.
The Nigeria National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited continues to sell fuel to major marketers at N446.57 per litre. However, independent marketers in Lagos, who purchase petrol at N490 per litre, are selling it at N520 per litre at their stations, depending on the location. While NNPC Limited maintains a retail selling price of N488 per litre in Lagos, major marketers have set their prices between N488 and N492 per litre, with location playing a role in pricing.
The surge in fuel prices has given rise to a flourishing black market, with operators buying fuel at N490 per litre and reselling it at N515 per litre. As a result, retail prices have seen additional markups. Many independent marketers have closed their stations to motorists and other fuel users due to the price increase.
Hawkers have been observed selling petrol at inflated prices of between N550 and N650 per litre in various parts of Lagos, including Maryland and Ikorodu road.
In response to the situation, the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Joe Ajaero, expressed that organized labor is not surprised by the actions of the marketers and that they are working on alternatives. Ajaero mentioned that one alternative proposed by the NLC is the use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) as a substitute for petrol. The NLC has conducted a pilot study in the Edo area, where about 10,000 vehicles were converted to CNG. The study revealed that a litre of CNG would cost approximately N90. Ajaero also mentioned that Innoson Motors plans to produce vehicles that can switch between CNG and petrol, allowing consumers to choose the more affordable option.
The current fuel price increase has highlighted the need for alternative solutions to reduce dependence on petrol and provide more affordable options for Nigerian consumers.