Users of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) should prepare themselves for continued shortage of the commodity till perhaps December, this year.
The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) indicated that the perennial shortage of LPG could only be addressed fully after the start of operations by Ghana National Gas Company (GNGC).
Yaro Kasambata, Deputy Public Relations Officer at NPA, made this known recently when he spoke to XYZ, an Accra-based radio station in an interview.
There was an inexplicable shortage of LPG in most areas of Accra during a visit by CITY & BUSINESS GUIDE on Friday.
Members of the public were seen combing the metropolis in search of the commodity but to no avail.
The scarcity of LPG began about a month ago yet the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) have not come out clear on the matter.
At Nungua, Teshie and La, no gas filling station was seen transacting business except one station at the Coca Cola Roundabout off the Spintex Road.
Drivers of commercial vehicles had formed long queues while domestic users were also seen waiting endlessly for the commodity.
Some taxi drivers told CITY & BUSINESS GUIDE that they received information of a fresh consignment of the commodity near the Nungua Police Barrier at 3 am on Thursday from their friends but the stock was sold out.
They added that they also got information that there was gas at Prampram but when they got there, they got disappointed again.
When the paper visited the New Horizontal Gas Filling Company at Agape near Ablekuma, a suburb of Accra, a huge ‘No Gas’ signpost had been displayed at the station.
Razak Monga, the attendant at the gas service station, in an interview with this paper said: “We have been out of supply for over a week.”
He noted that the perennial gas shortage had cost his outfit a lot in terms of business and also transportation to and from available depots nearby to check on the availability of LPG.
He expressed the hope that government, the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), would put in place measures to curb the trend.
Another gas station located about seven hundred meters away from the New Horizontal Gas Station was also locked up.
Moses Nartey, the sales officer, said many of their clients were turned away as a result of the shortage.
He said a 13-kilogramme cylinder filled with LPG was being sold at GH¢17 while the 19-kilogramme goes for GH¢19. However, some clients were even willing to pay more as a result of the scarcity.
At the Odorgonnor Gas Station near Awoshie, also in Accra, cylinders with the names of their owners inscribed on them had been lined up in a queue waiting to be filled.
Abraham Coffie, the officer in charge at the station, said the queue “keeps getting longer.”
He said suppliers had assured them that there would deliver fresh stock by Monday, August 6, 2012, to solve the problem.
The Tema Oil Refiner (TOR) has the capacity to pump 1000 metric tonnes of LPG to the market but it produces 250 metric tonnes of the commodity a day. The short fall of 750 metric tonnes a day is made up by imported LPG.
The shortage of LPG on the market in recent weeks was said to have been caused by disruptions in lay-cans of imports which were not honoured but the recent problem persist.
The Ministry of Energy, in consultation with NPA, Energy Commission and TOR, say they are seeking medium to long term solutions to resolve the intermittent shortage of LPG on the market.
By Samuel Boadi & Emelia Ennin-Abbey
Source: Samuel Boadi & Emelia Ennin-Abbey
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