Transport

Terminal operators suffer high operational costs over hike in diesel price

There are indications that terminal operators in Nigerian ports are suffering high operating costs due to the astronomical hike in prices of Automated Gas Oil (AGO) otherwise known as diesel. Findings at the nation’s port showed that the terminal operators do not enjoy power supply, hence all machines and equipment inside the various terminals are diesel driven.

At the weekend, diesel prices have gone to N780 in some stations, while some other major petroleum marketers still sell the product for N750.

Meanwhile there are projections that the price of diesel would rise further to N1,500 per litre. Speaking to The Trumpet, an insider source at one of the terminals in Lagos lamented that in the face of these challenges, which had affected cost of doing business, the terminal operators were not permitted to add a penny to the charges they collect at the port, The Trumpet gathered.

The source who pleaded anonymity said: “The cost of diesel in Nigeria today has skyrocketed and everything you see inside the port today is diesel driven, there is no single electricity inside the port, everything is driven by diesel.

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“With all of these, we are not expected to add a dime to our charges and yet we have not reviewed our charges for over ten years now, this is a challenge.

“When the government wants to collect their money (Throughput fees and Lease fees) from terminal operators, they collect it in dollars through the NPA, we know how much the dollars was to the Naira back then and now.

“With the little profit terminal operators make, they are also expected to increase their workers’ salaries every two years, but yet they cannot increase their rate of charges on operations,” he stated.

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