Concerned by the interminent increase in the price of Liquified Natural Gas (LPG) in Nigeria, the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has played the blame game by insisting that the Federal Government was responsible for the hike.
The price of LPG which is commonly referred to as cooking gas, has consistently been on the increase which economic experts described as ‘hyper-inflation’ since the last one year, a development that has thrown many households into crisis of choice for cooking energy.
PENGASSAN described the development as disheartening noting that the price of refilling 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas has risen by almost 100 percent over the past one year.
President of the Union, Festus Osifo said it required urgent attention, and called on government at all levels to quickly intervene and find solutions to problems of general hike in prices of commodities across the country, noting that the poorer families suffer it the most
The Union said: “Currently, the cost of cooking gas has continued in steady climb from average of 4,500 Naira at the beginning of 2021 to the current price of between 8,750 and 10,000 Naira for the popular 12.5kg cylinder.We are worried that most middle to upper class homes, especially in the urban areas, are feeling the pinch.
“The poorer families are going through harrowing experiences trying to cope, more so as the price of kerosene had long taken flight in addition to being scarce in many places.
“Despite Nigeria sitting on one of the largest gas reserves in the world, we still depend largely on imported gas. Up to 70 per cent of the gas we consume in the country is imported.”
The union called on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently abolish 7.5% Value Added Tax (VAT) recently imposed on importation of gas in August 2021, and adopt other economic measures like stabilising the naira in the foreign exchange market and providing some form of palliative for the lower-class citizens to cushion the effects as they bear the brunt of inflation most.
“We hereby call on the President to immediately abolish the VAT on gas importation, prevent further slide of the Naira, channel some of the exported gas to domestic use, and provide some form of verifiable palliatives for the lower-class citizens,” the Union said.
According to Cooking Gas Price Watch report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) for October 2021, the average price of 12.5kg of the commodity increased by 62.8 percent to N6,638.3 in October 2021 from N4,078.7 in October 2020, and increased by 7.7 per cent month-on-month to N6,638.3 in October 2021 from N6,165.0 in September.
The NBS report also indicated that the cost of refilling 5kg cooking gas cylinder rose by 9.6% month-month to N2,627.9 in October 2021 from N2,397.6, and by 34.5% year-on-year from N1,953.7 in October 2020.
Current market survey of cooking gas shows that refilling 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas costs N10, 000 and above.
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