By Franklin Ocheneyi
“WE need to address the issue of industrial gas pricing to support the non-oil sector of the economy and promote the realization of the objectives of Economic Recovery and Growth Plan [ERGP].”
Mr. Babatunde Ruwase, President, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) made this call to the Federal Government at a press briefing organised by the chamber on the state of the economy.
A recent circular from the Nigerian Gas Marketing Company Limited (NGMCL) stated that the 2018 gas price for the commercial sector has been increased from $7.45/mscf to $7.62/mscf with effect from January 1, 2018.
According to him, users of gas are currently charged in dollars, this creates pressures and volatilities of exchange rate depreciation.
“This pricing policy has been imposing a lot of burden on the manufacturing sector. It is inappropriate to charge in dollars for a product that is produced in Nigeria and sold in naira.
“Energy cost is a major component of cost and a major factor in the competitiveness of firms in Nigeria. The government needs to support investment in gas infrastructure in order to bring down the price of gas to end users. This will enhance the competitiveness of our industrial sector as well as other sectors of the economy,” he said.