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Tue, Nov

CLAMPDOWN ON OIL SMUGGLERS: FUEL PRODUCT LOSSES SLASHED BY 93%, SAYS NPA

Business & Economy

The National Petroleum Authority has disclosed that by making stringent efforts to curb illegal downstream activities, the NPA has cut back exports of petroleum products to neighbouring countries from nearly 30 million litres in August 2017 to roughly two million litres in August this year. This represents a 93 per cent reduction in illegal trades.

The National Petroleum Authority has disclosed that by making stringent efforts to curb illegal downstream activities, the NPA has cut back exports of petroleum products to neighbouring countries from nearly 30 million litres in August 2017 to roughly two million litres in August this year. This represents a 93 per cent reduction in illegal trades.

Making opening remarks at the launch of a stakeholder engagement on the downstream sector yesterday, the chief executive officer of the National Petroleum Authority, Alhassan Tampuli, said significant gains have been made through the sharp downturn in illegal oil trading across borders in the West African subregion.

The activities of a few unscrupulous individuals for personal gain can no longer be allowed to flourish at the expense of the state, he said.

“We at the Authority are poised to ensure protection is given to the business of genuine players in the industry, and we shall work with you to expose the fraudulent ones desperately trying to undermine the decency of the industry,” Mr Tampuli said.

“Let me reiterate that if the few bad guys have learned how to fly without perching, we have learned to shoot without missing.”

Joint force

Mr Tampuli said close collaboration with the security services has led to the impounding of about 43 vehicles and a canoe engaged in oil smuggling.

Some of these canoes have been designed in such a way that the crew can pour a million tonnes of oil into the hold yet not a drop seeps into the ocean, he revealed.

“One canoe is capable of storing 120,000 litres of petroleum products. By the arrangement we have put in place, we shall, together with the security agencies, be putting some of them to flames,” he declared.

Mr Tampuli said products found on board some of these canoes and vehicles had been confiscated. The NPA will ensure that all relevant taxes and levies are realised and paid back to the Government of Ghana, he said.

Customers first

Recognising the dynamic nature of the business, the NPA is committed to formulating innovative strategies and policies which will ensure the industry remains profitable and that consumers enjoy value for money, Mr Tampuli pledged.

He said such stakeholder engagements will allow the Authority to dialogue and share opportunities with industry players.

“This will ensure the continuous growth and development of the petroleum downstream industry in accordance with international benchmarks,” the NPA boss said.

Ex-pump price

Mr Tampuli noted that some adjustments were recorded earlier this week in prices of petroleum products and that predictably the public had laid the blame on the NPA.

Clarifying matters, he said that following the implementation of the price deregulation policy in July 2015, responsibility for setting ex-pump prices of petroleum products shifted from the NPA to petroleum service providers.

The very few products whose prices are still determined by the NPA include residual fuel oil, premix fuel and aviation fuel, he said.

Before the implementation of the price deregulation policy, the Authority was mandated by Regulation 14 to issue the product price build-up to petroleum service providers and to publish this on the NPA’s website, a practice to which the Authority has strictly adhered.

Yesterday’s meeting brought together the Ghana Revenue Authority and industry players including the Tanker Owners’ Association, Chamber of Bulk Oil Distributors, Tema Oil Refinery and Association of Oil Marketing Companies.


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