Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has pegged the rise in average price of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) or cooking gas at between 0.11 and 0.43 per cent month-on-month in its latest report covering the month of July.
However, a THISDAY review has shown that since the just released report, there has been a substantial surge between August and the first week of September of as high as 9 per cent in Abuja and environs.
The recent increase in gas prices after a lull, confirms a statement recently by the Nigerian Association of Liquefied Petroleum Gas Marketers (NALPGM), that Nigerians should expect the increase on the back of rising international prices, high tax rates, high prices of vessels, forex scarcity, and naira devaluation.
In Abuja, for instance, a kilogramme of cooking gas now sells for N745 as against the N680 it sold before now.
With the surging prices, many Nigerian homes, already faced with the concerning inflation could be forced to revert to using firewood. In 2022, the World Bank reported that only about 11 per cent of Nigerians had access to clean cooking fuels.
Also, the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) recently noted that despite clean cooking access rates, the number of people without clean cooking solutions in sub-Saharan Africa increased by 220 million between 2010 and 2022.
However, in its report released at the weekend, the NBS stated that the average retail price for refilling a 5kg rose by 0.11 per cent on a month-on-month basis from N4,068.26 recorded in June 2023 to N4,072.87 in July 2023.
But on a year-on-year basis, this decreased by 7.39 per cent from N4,397.68 in July 2022, it added.
On state profile analysis, Kwara recorded the highest average price for refilling a 5kg cooking gas with N4,780.00, followed by Zamfara with N4,695.47, and Niger with N4,633.33.
On the other hand, the NBS report noted that Anambra recorded the lowest price with N3,086.67, followed by Ondo and Ekiti with N3,285.00 and N3,293.33 respectively.
“In addition, analysis by zone showed that the North-Central recorded the highest average retail price for refilling a 5kg of cooking gas, with N4,425.56, followed by the North-West with N4,265.97, while the South-West recorded the lowest with N3,711.22.
“Also, the average retail price for refilling a 12.5kg LPG rose by 0.43 per cent on a month-on-month basis from N9,123.25 in June 2023 to N9,162.11 in July 2023,” the report stated.
Besides, on a year-on-year basis, this fell by 6.74 per cent from N9,824.07 in July 2022.
“On state profile analysis, Cross River recorded the highest average retail price for the refilling of a 12.5kg Cylinder of LPG with N10,175.33, followed by Ogun with N9,885.12 and Bayelsa with N9,878.42.
“Conversely, the lowest average price was recorded in Adamawa with N7,586.88, followed by Zamfara and Borno with N7,939.17 and N8,020.00 respectively,” it explained.
Nigeria has a proven gas reserves of over 209 trillion cubic feet of gas and another 600 trillion cubic feet of potential discovery, but has neither the investment to get the gas out of the ground nor the transportation infrastructure to move it around.
In the same vein, the average retail price per litre of Household Kerosene (HHK) paid by consumers in July 2023 was N1,260.81, indicating an increase of 2 per cent compared to N1,236.10 recorded in June 2023.
On a year-on-year basis, the average retail price per litre of the product rose by 59.65 per cent from N789.75 in July 2022. On state profile analysis, the highest average price per litre in July 2023 was recorded in Adamawa with N1,757.69, followed by Abuja with N1,466.67 and Benue with N1,465.63.
The NBS report noted that the lowest price was recorded in Jigawa with N991.67, followed by Kebbi with N1,066.67 and Kaduna with N1,075.64.
In addition, analysis by zone showed that the North-east recorded the highest average retail price per litre of household kerosene with N1,355.37, followed by the South-East with N1,337.17, while the North-West recorded the lowest with N1,108.28.
The average retail price per gallon of household kerosene paid by consumers in July 2023 was N4,306.07, showing an increase of 0.87 per cent from N4,269.13 in June 2023. On a year-on-year basis, this increased by 49.18 per cent from N2,886.41 in July 2022, the report stated.
Nigeria’s inflation surged to 24.08 per cent in the month of July 2023, a 129 basis-point increase compared to 22.79 per cent recorded in the previous month, with energy costs contributing a substantial chunk.