By Richards Adeniyi
Nigeria’s state oil firm, NNPC, recently gave reasons why some of its mega filling stations in Abuja and environs have been out of service for almost two months now.
The spokesperson of the corporation, Ndu Ughamadu, told media source in a telephone interview that the stations, like most others across the country, were deliberately shut down to allow for a review and revision of their operations to make for efficiency and effective service delivery.
“As you are aware, all the filling stations across the country wearing NNPC branding and logo are under franchise with private sector operators in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry. On a regular basis, the NNPC will undertake reviews of their operations and restrategise for better service,” Mr. Ughamadu said.
He denied speculations that the closure of the stations for the period had anything to do with reports of fraud or mismanagement.
Also, Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Maikanti Baru, recently spoke on the plans of his management for the retail marketing arm of the corporation.
A statement sent to media source directed NNPC Retail Limited (a downstream subsidiary of the NNPC) to target 30 per cent market share of petroleum products distribution business by 2020.
The corporation’s downstream subsidiary currently holds about 14 per cent market share of the nation’s products distribution network, the statement said.
Mr. Baru explained that the 30 per cent target would enable efficient products distribution and price stability across the country.
He also disclosed that by that time, NNPC Retail Ltd would also extend its businesses to other neighbouring states in the West African sub-region.
“In making the choice to rebrand these entities and outlets, we are taking a huge step towards enhancing our corporate reputation, improved profitability, sustainable growth and most importantly, capture a larger share of the market across the entire downstream value-chain,” Mr. Baru said.
He said the corporation also rebranded four of its downstream subsidiaries, namely Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC), Nigerian Pipelines and Storage Company (NPSC), NNPC Retail Limited and NNPC Shipping.
Mr. Baru said re-branding the four companies also prepares them for more competitiveness in the downstream sub-sector, in line with the corporation’s 12 Business Focus Areas (BUFAs).
He said the NNPC was committed to ensuring that PPMC becomes more profitable and crucial to meeting the nation’s energy demands.
Restating the corporation’s commitment to bequeath an NPSC that would brim with revamped infrastructure for efficient storage and distribution of petroleum products across the nation, thereby ensuring supply reliability and energy security.
The statement also said NNPC’s key aspiration was to strengthen its shipping outfit to support the downstream growth objectives of its subsidiaries.