That The Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) has given the alarm to the activities of downstream industry portfolio investors.
MOMAN President, Mr. Oyetunji Oyebanji, said this during a webinar seminar on Nigerian crude oil downstream consultative summit yesterday.
He lamented that the activities of the unscrupulous businessmen who have no investment in the industry deprived the real operators of access to forex. Oyebanji urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to investigate the activities of faceless operators in the sector to avoid dragging real investors out of access to forex.
The MOMAN chairman who is also CEO of 11 Plc, formerly Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc, revealed that most downstream operators are going through a difficult time as their operations are now at the lowest ebb.
He said some of the operators have had to lay off workers and shut down fuel stations because they could not afford to service their debt obligations. He said the association was already in talks with the CBN to see how its members could access forex in an attempt to turn the fortunes into the sector, which was turning to the worse in the face of tough economic realities.
The MOMAN chief complained that quoted companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange operating in the downstream sector have had their investments over 10 years turned negative due to the uncertainty in the economy. He advised that the way out of logjam was for the government to speed up its deregulation agenda to enable existing and new players in the sector to earn more investment.
Similarly, Depot and Petroleum Markets Association of Nigeria (DAPPMAN) Chairman Dame Winifred Akpan said deregulation was the way out of the crises facing the downstream sector.
She has decided that the government was penetrating the downstream industry as a player and regulator, and regretted that the gains recorded in the past as there was a strong involvement in the private sector in the industry have been eroded, and that most players now quit.
Akpan, who is also chief executive of Northwest Petroleum and Gas Company Limited, said some of the tank farms have been taken over by banks and AMCON over the inability to allow some of its members to service their loans when needed.