Citi Business News investigations have exposed discrepancies in the pricing of petroleum products by some Oil Marketing Companies (OMC)s following attempts to implement the full deregulation of the petroleum downstream sector.
[contextly_sidebar id=”6glcgOZVY75PwxCgE3a4SrYy9NfFEbvg”]The huge difference in the prices of petroleum products at various pump stations have led to concerns about the pricing formula of the different OMCs and the capacity of the National Petroleum Authority to effectively regulate the OMCs.
There is currently a 21 pesewa gap in the price of petrol per litre and an 18 pesewa gap in the price of Diesel per litre, comparing the highest and least prices of the products on the market.
This will translate into millions of dollars in windfall profit for the OMCs without any form of accountability.
The table below details petrol and diesel prices after NPA sanctioned price adjustments on June 16 and July 1 and the percentage change.
|OMCs||Petrol price on June 16||Petrol price after July 1||Percentage change||Diesel price on June 16||Diesel
after July 1
According to citi business news investigations, some OMCs during the recent review of prices pegged their dollar rate at 4cedis 60 pesewas while others pegged their rates at 4 cedis 35pesewas.
However the Bank of Ghana’s interbank rate as at July 2 was selling at 4cedis 19pesewas while on the forex market on the same day at the dollar was selling at 4 cedis 44 pesewas.
The recent reviews in the prices of the petroleum products have been due to foreign exchange losses and not due to increases in the prices of crude oil on the world market.
This is because the cedi has depreciated by close to 25% against the dollar and other major trading currencies between January and June 2015.
But the cedi in recent days has started gaining some grounds against the dollar and other major foreign currencies since the Central bank started pumping 20 million dollars daily into the economy.
However there has not been any immediate reduction in the price of petroleum products at the pump.
Citi Business news has learnt the National Petroleum Authority failed to set a ceiling for the pricing of petroleum products when it allowed for adjustments on July 1.
This is despite setting a 4 % ceiling for OMCs to adjust their prices on June 16 when the NPA took the first step towards the implementation of the petroleum product price deregulation.
KEY QUESTIONS THAT DESERVE ANSWERS
- What has accounted for the huge gap in the prices of the petroleum products (Pricing formula)?
- What was the role of the NPA in the setting of the prices by the OMCs and how are they ensuring Ghanaians are not being exploited?
- Why the similarity in pricing for both petrol and diesel? (Cartel)?
- The cedi has stabilized and is gaining grounds against the dollar, why is there not an immediate reduction in prices?
- NPA must clarify whether the full petroleum deregulation is in force? The NPA Act has not been reviewed yet?
By: Rabiu Alhassan/citifmonline.com/Ghana