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Fuel Subsidy Hits N1.593tn, Refinery Rehabilitation Gulps N54.66bn

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Latest data on the amount spent in subsidising Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, seen in Abuja on Monday showed that the government subsidised the commodity with N1.593tn between January and June 2022.

It was also gathered that the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited pumped N54.66bn into refinery rehabilitation during the six months period.

Figures obtained from the NNPCL’s presentation to the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee meeting for July 2022 showed that subsidies on petrol were implemented in June. The company transited from a public oil firm to a commercial entity last month.

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It also made it clear in July that subsidy on petrol was now a burden of the Federal Government and not its own responsibility.

READ ALSO: NNPC, IOCs Sign Agreements To Generate $500bn Revenue

An analysis of the July presentation to FAAC showed that fuel subsidy or under-recovery/value shortfall, as described by NNPCL, rose to N1.593tn in the first half of 2022.

Figures from the report indicated that the amounts spent as subsidy on the commodity in January, February and March were N210.38bn, N219.78bn and N245.77bn, respectively.

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A total of N271.59bn, N327.1bn and N319.18bn were spent as subsidy in April, May and June respectively.

On refinery rehabilitation, the oil company spent N9.11bn in January, made no expense in February and March. It invested another N9.11bn on the facility.

It spent N9.11bn in each of the months of April and May 2022 on refinery rehabilitation, while investing N18.22bn on the plant in June.

In April this year, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, said the April 2023 completion date for the rehabilitation of the Port Harcourt refinery was feasible and that the plant would refine 60,000 barrels of crude by early next year.

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“This project kicked off second quarter last year and where they are now is quite impressive. It is on schedule. The commitment is to deliver 60,000 barrels per day from this refinery by the first quarter of next year, and, of course, we are quite happy,” Sylva had stated while inspecting the facility.

The NNPC officially signed the contract with Tecnimont SPA for the $1.5bn rehabilitation programme of the Port Harcourt Refining Company in April 2021 and had promised that the facility would be completed in 18 months.

Meanwhile the company’s July presentation to FAAC stated that the sum of N391.529bn was the gross domestic crude oil and gas revenue for the month of June 2022.

READ ALSO: Scarcity Hits Major Cities, Fuel Sells N180/Litre As NNPC Cuts Supplies

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It noted that the value shortfall on the importation of PMS recovered from June 2022 proceeds was N319.176bn while the outstanding balance carried forward was N1.01tn.

“The estimated value shortfall of N1,490,413,402,007.66 (consisting arrears of N479,688,823,026.00 plus estimated June 2022 value shortfall of N1,010,724,578,981.66) is to be recovered from July 2022 proceed due for sharing at the August 2022 FAAC meeting,” the company stated.

The Chief Executive Officer, NNPCL, Mele Kyari, had during the unveiling of the newly commercialised oil firm, stated that the company was now a private outfit and had nothing to do with FAAC anymore.

Responding to a question on what would happen to NNPC’s monthly FAAC contributions, kyari replied, “We are now a private company. Would MTN go to FAAC?”

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When probed further to tell if there would be no more FAAC remittances from the company going forward, he said, “We will pay our taxes, royalties and deliver dividends to our shareholders.”

Asked about the arrears to FAAC that were not delivered by the firm over the years, the CEO said, “Which arrears? That’s Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.”’

On how the oil firm would handle subsidy on petrol being a commercial entity, Kyari replied that fuel subsidy was not a burden of NNPC.

The CEO had said, “Subsidy is not NNPC’s burden. Subsidy is the decision of the state and in every jurisdiction anywhere in the world, countries see them differently. In some countries, they put petroleum tax on top of the market price of these products.

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“So, when decisions are to be made in some jurisdictions, they will reduce the level of taxation. That also is another form of subsidy. In some countries, you have zero taxation but you will pay the market price for the commodity. That also in a way, in fiscal system, looks at it from a subsidy point of view.

“In very many countries, a leader can decide that I don’t even want my countrymen to buy it at the market price. I’m ready to reduce that price for them so that they can buy.”

Kyari added, “In either case, whichever way the decision and the policy of the state decides, you know NNPC is there in the space to provide the product to the state at commercial value and, of course, it is also our duty to deliver to the customer at the price that the state wants.

READ ALSO: NNPC Moves To Stop $1.6bn Seplat, ExxonMobil Deal With Major Counter-offer

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“So it is no longer an NNPC issue. NNPC will have no issue with this. NNPC will be happy to supply because we will now see the state as our customer.”

Subsidy on petrol has remained an issue of concern among Nigerians and international agencies, as its humongous cost has continued to drain the treasury of the Federal Government.

PUNCH.

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CAC To Cancel Certificates Of BDCs With Revoked Licences

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The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has said it would cancel the certificates of incorporation of Bureaux De Change(BCDs) whose licences have been revoked by the Central Bank of Nigeria( CBN).

The Nation reported in February the CBN revoked the licences of 4,173 Bureau De Change operators over their failure to meet regulatory guidelines.

In a statement by its acting Director, Corporate Communications, Sidi Hakama, CBN explained that the regulatory provisions flouted include nonpayment of all necessary fees within the stipulated period.

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CBN said: “The affected institutions failed to observe at least one of the following regulatory provisions: Payment of all necessary fees, including licence renewal, within the stipulated period in line with the guidelines.

READ ALSO: FEC Steps Down Projects From Past Govts For Review

“Rendition of returns in line with the guidelines; compliance with guidelines, directives, and circulars of the CBN, particularly Anti-Money Laundering, Countering the Financing of Terrorism and Counter-Proliferation Financing regulations.”

However, in line with the above directive by the CBN, the CAC in a notice on its website on Wednesday, said the certificates would be cancelled within three months if the affected companies do not change the names and objects of such companies.

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The general public is hereby informed that following the revocation of the operational licenses of 4,173 Bureau De Change companies by the Central Bank of Nigeria vide a Federal Republic of Nigeria Official Gazette (Vol. 111) No. 37 of February 27, 2024 for noncompliance with Regulatory Standards, the Corporate Affairs Commission in the exercise of its powers under section 8(1)(e) of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 advises these companies to within three months from the date of this publication, change the names and objects of such companies.

“Failure to change the names and objects within the stipulated time frame shall result in cancellation of certificate of incorporation and dissolution. It is to be noted that it is unlawful for a company whose certificate has been deemed dissolved to carry on business,” the CAC notice reads.

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FG Suspends Taxes On Maize, Wheat, Rice, Others

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The Federal Government has suspended duties, tariffs and taxes on some essential food items imported through land and sea borders.

Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Abubakar Kyari, announced this at the National Press Centre, Abuja.

Kyari also said the Federal Government has also inaugurated the Renewed Hope National Livestock Transformation Implementation Committee to develop and implement policies that prioritize livestock development and align with the National Livestock Transformation Plan.

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He stated that the listed food items, which include maize, wheat, husked brown rice and cowpeas, will enjoy a 150-day Duty-Free Import Window.

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He added that the move is part of the Presidential Accelerated Stabilization and Advancement Plan, which is aimed at achieving food security and economic stability in the country.

According to him: “The Federal Government has announced a 150-day Duty-Free Import Window for Food Commodities, suspension of duties, tariffs and taxes for the importation of certain food commodities (through land and sea borders). These commodities include maize, husked brown rice, wheat and cowpeas.

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READ ALSO: Court Orders Buhari’s Minister To Account For N729bn Payment To Poor Nigerians

“Under this arrangement, imported food commodities will be subjected to a Recommended Retail Price (RRP).

“I am glad to reiterate that the Government’s position exemplifies standards that would not compromise the safety of the various food items for consumption.

“In addition to the importation by the private sector, the Federal Government will import 250,000MT of wheat and 250,000MT of maize. The imported food commodities in their semi-processed state will target supplies to the small-scale processors and millers across the country.”

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CAC Extends PoS Registration Deadline 

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The Corporate Affairs Commission has announced the approval to extend the mandatory Point of Sales agents, super agents and sole agents registration to September 5th, 2024.

The commission made the announcement in a statement signed by its management and posted on its Facebook page on Saturday, giving a 60-day extension.

It said the extension is to give sufficient time to operators particularly those in remote areas who might have encountered network challenges to so register and continue with their businesses.

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The statement read, “The Corporate Affairs Commission wishes to notify Fintech Operators also known as Point of Sales Operators that the initial deadline of 7th July 2024 given for the registration of sole Agents, Super Agents and Agents has been extended for sixty days beginning from 7th July 2024 to the 5th September 2024.

“This is to give sufficient time to Operators particularly those in remote areas who might have encountered network challenges to so register and continue with their businesses.”

It added operators who continue to disobey after the new deadline will risk losing their businesses and facing prosecution for assisting criminal activities.

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“Operators who fail or refuse to register at the end of the extended deadline run the risk of losing such businesses and prosecution for aiding and abetting criminal activities,” it said.

 

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