Investigations has shown how companies importing fuel into Nigeria went from only five in 2006 to about 200 as at last check in 2016.
Checks with the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) revealed that Nigeria had only five fuel importers in 2006. One year later, the number rose to 10. In 2008, the figure grew to 19, and by 2011, it reached 140. The figure is now about 200.
Most of the companies joined the fuel import gravy train during the Goodluck Jonathan administration.
According to information, the rise was due to the importers interest in tapping into the fuel subsidy regime which sky rocketed during that period.
Interestingly, many of the importing companies are also included on the list of those indicted in the fuel subsidy investigations by the Buhari’s administration.
The oil subsidy regime between 2009 and 2011, saw Nigeria’s government paying importers subsidy for 59 million litres of fuel per day, a sharp contrast to the country’s actual consumption of 35 million litres.
In 2011, Nigeria spent N2.5 trillion on fuel subsidy, a 900 percent increase from the N245 billion in the year’s budget.
Companies importing fuel into Nigeria include Duke Oil Ltd, an oil trading arm of the NNPC, Oando, Sahara Energy, MRS Oil and Gas, AA Rano, Bono, Masters Energy, Eterna Oil and Gas, Cassiva Energy, Hyde Energy and Brittania U.
Others are NorthWest Petroleum, Optima Energy, AMG Petroenergy, Arkiren Oil and Gas Limited, Shoreline Limited, Entourage Oil, Setana Energy and Prudent Energy, Trafigura Beheev BV (TBBV), among others.
Shockingly, the above companies, including others, estimated to be more than 30 companies were recently indicted in the subsidy scam after investigations.
Last week, the NNPC released the names of 39 winners for the sale and purchase of Nigerian crude in 2017/2018. According to the contract, the deal will run for one year from January 1 for12 circles of crude oil allocation, involving 18 Nigerian companies, 11 International Traders, five foreign refineries, three National Oil Companies (NOCs) and two NNPC trading arms.
At least six of the companies listed were indicted or are still facing charges for fuel subsidy fraud. These include Masters Energy, Oando, Eterna Oil and Gas, Seterna Energy, AMG Petroenergy, and Prudent Energy.
NNPC said all the contracts for the 2017/2018 crude trade were for 32,000 barrels per day except Duke Oil Ltd, an oil trading arm of the NNPC, which will be for 90,000 barrels per day.
Before now, a list of 25 companies recommended by the Presidential Committee on Verification and Reconciliation of Subsidy Payments, for probing in the alleged fuel subsidy fraud had emerged.

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