REFINED petroleum products still dominate the nation’s import chart as over 316,247 metric tonnes of different refined petroleum products were brought into the country through the various sea ports within the last six weeks.
Statistical data from the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, shows the trend may continue till the end of February.
According to the data, a total of 202, 747 metric tonnes of petroleum came into Lagos between January and the second week of February as against 72,500 metric tonnes received in Warri pilotage district of the NPA and 41,000 metric tonnes from Calabar port axis.
The Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, otherwise known as petrol, was the most imported of petroleum products, while Automated Gas Oil, AGO, recorded the least quantity products with only 5,000 metric tonnes expected in the month of February.
The absence of aviation fuel for the airline industry was an indication that there was a decline in the demand in that sector during the period.
In the statistical data, bulk wheat was next to petroleum products as a total of 141,169 metric tonnes of wheat was brought through the Lagos and Calabar ports.
The data showed that while 128,169 metirc tonnes came through the Lagos ports, 13,000 metric tonnes came in through the port in Calabar.
Trailing wheat was a 69,032 metric tonnes of general cargoes shipments within the period, and this was followed by 11,027 metric tonnes of containerized cargoes in the first six weeks of the year.
Reacting to the cargo throughput, the Chairman of the Port Consultative Council, PCC, Otunba Kunle Folarin, said that Nigeria will continue to import for a long time adding that until the refineries are working at optimum capacity, petroleum products will continue to dominate the import chart.
Folarin also said that ”if the private people that have been granted license to refine crude in-country operationalised their licenses, perhaps the level of importation will reduce.”