The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, has attributed the recent increase in the pump price of petrol to the announcement by an American pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, on its recent breakthrough in the fight against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Last Friday, the petrol pump price was increased to N170 per litre.
Speaking with State House correspondents in Abuja on Monday, November 16, Sylva said the announcement of a COVID-19 vaccine by Pfizer triggered a slight increase in the price of crude oil in the global market.
“What happened recently was because of the announcement of a vaccine for COVID-19 by Pfizer. With that, crude oil prices went up a little bit.
If you have been following crude oil prices, you would have seen that crude oil prices went up a little bit as a result of this announcement. So, when crude oil prices go up a little bit, then you will see that (it will) instantly reflect on the price of petrol, which is a derivative of crude oil.” Sylva said
The minister explained that the government took the decision to deregulate the sector in order to ensure its optimum performance.
“When the price of crude oil goes up, then it means that the price of the fixed stock has gone higher; it will also affect the price of the refined product and that is why you see that product prices are usually not static, it depends on the price of crude oil which goes up and down.
That is why we say, deregulate so that as the price goes up or down, you begin to go up and down as well at the pump. Before now, we fixed it which was not optimal for us as a country.”the Minister said