A tripartite committee consisting of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), and the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), has been set up to tackle the growing incidents of petroleum products smuggling to neighbouring countries.
The inaugural meeting was held in Abuja – The inaugural meeting which was held at the Customs House on Tuesday in Abuja, was attended by the Group Managing Director, NNPC, Dr Maikanti Baru, Controller General of the NCS, Col. Hammed Ali, and the Director of the DPR, Mr Mordecai Ladan.
Smuggling of petroleum products is affecting the economy – Speaking at the inauguration, Maikanti Baru said the smuggling of petroleum products across the country’s borders was causing serious revenue losses, and had been rendering all efforts of the Government to make sure petroleum products are appropriately distributed across the country useless.
“THE NEGATIVE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF SMUGGLING IS THAT IT IS UNDERMINING NIGERIA’S ECONOMIC GROWTH AS A HUGE AMOUNT OF MONEY IS SPENT IN TERMS OF UNDER-RECOVERY. THIS HUGE LOSS IS DRAINING THE TREASURY. REMEMBER, THESE ARE MONIES THAT COULD BE USED TO DEVELOP SEVERAL CRITICAL SECTORS OF THE ECONOMY.”
Some other efforts have been made – Recall that Nairametrics had earlier reported that the DPR also created and distributed the National Production Monitoring System (NPMS), to track petroleum production and it’s movement.
The job of the committee
The committee would close down unlicensed filling station – The committee reported that some unlicensed filling stations along the borderline had been identified as being responsible for the smuggling of petroleum products.
They will make sure such filling stations are closed, and also tackle other methods used in smuggling petroleum products.
They would monitor licensed filling stations – The Comptroller-General of Customs, Col Hameed Ali, said, the committee would also monitor the activities of licensed filling stations.
“WE HAVE ENOUGH MEN AND RESOURCES THAT CAN MANAGE THE NATION’S 4,070KM BORDER-LINE AND ADDRESS THIS MENACE ONCE AND FOR ALL. WHAT WE NEED, HOWEVER, IS INFORMATION ON A REAL-TIME BASIS.”