Acute fuel shortage to end soon-BDC, Ministry assure

Consumers of petroleum products especially petrol have been assured of constant supply in the next two weeks to put an end to the recent shortages and chaos at the petrol stations across the country.

Chief Executive Officer of the BDCs Chamber, Senyo Hosi told Joy News Night, Monday there were more vessels coming in and that would bring about constant supply of fuel up to two weeks.

He observed that when the other vessels arrive, the supply chain would increase to three weeks until the situation normalizes.

Reports reveal there are enough fuel stock to last at least a month as authorities ration distribution of petrol to filling stations after a week of acute shortage.

It is further expected that the funding confidence re-established with the banks, would last ‘us another month unless of course, there is a major negative shift in policy directions which would only rather grow more subsidies’ Senyo Hosi intimated.

He stated however, those on financial hold up are expected to be sorted out before this week ends.

Government owes the Bulk Oil Distribution Companies (BDCs) some GH¢1.5 billion.

In the heat of events, Information and Media Relations Minister, Mahama Ayariga announced President John Mahama had directed the Finance Minister, Seth Terkper to release $60 million to the BDCs to ensure there is enough fuel in the system.

Before then Mr. Hosi had cautioned that until that money was paid to allow them settle international suppliers, the situation would linger on.

Suppliers, he noted, have confirmed enough fuel was reaching most of the worse hit areas of the country especially Accra, the Ashanti and Eastern regions with a few trucks heading towards the north.

As at Saturday and Sunday, ‘we had managed to deliver up to 9 million litres serving mostly Accra and the Ashanti region and a bit of the Eastern region and a few trucks heading to the north,’ he said and added, they had targeted about 8 million distributions this Monday morning.

Mr. Hosi explained it had become imperative to ration the fuel. According to him, it would enable as many filling stations as possible, to receive stock, thereby avoiding long queues and discouraging panic buying among the public.

‘Our consumption of petrol is about 4.6 million a day and we definitely have to do more than 4.6 million a day in order to catch up with the buffer stock in the various filling stations,’ he mentioned.

He continued it was going to take a little time for the backlogs of distribution to cover for the lost days.

He pointed out that the distribution was being rationed not because the stocks were not available but there has been a turnaround time before the supply chain.

Since government has set a clear road map to dealing with the debt and the subsidies which increased the debt, ‘I don’t see us facing any acute challenge,’ Mr. Hosi said.

The Energy Minister and his two deputies toured some filling stations in the capital to ensure everything was being done by the government to avert a recurrence of the fuel shortage situation.

When Joy News asked if there was enough stock to last for a month and over, Public Relations Officer at the Energy and Petroleum Ministry, Edward Bawa, said it was possible since they had made frantic efforts to send the products out continuously for the past days.

According to him, part of the shortage was very artificial because people were anticipating a fuel price hike in order to cash in.

He also urged motorists and consumers of petroleum products to expect drastic improvement in the supply of petrol in the coming days.

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