The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

LPRC Debunks Tarpeh Over Imminent Gas Shortage

In the wake of the coronavirus threats hovering in Liberia, that is said to lack a system to fight the virus, the country is at the verge of running into quadruple economic hurdles if government does not act swiftly. With the presence of the virus on the continents which is affecting almost everything globally, Liberia being no exception is expected to experience severe strangulation in its economy which has already begun affecting the importation of its stable food, rice, as well as petroleum products, among other essential commodities.
However, the Management of the Liberia Petroleum Refining Company said the company has the mandate and it is clothed with the authority to speak to issues of petroleum importation and distribution throughout the country.
The LPRC management said the public is advised that all information relating to petroleum and petroleum related activities, including stock balances must be confirmed and/or released by the Management of LPRC.
The management assured the general public that there is enough quantity of gasoline and diesel in the country and there is no need for panic.
The LPRC’s comments comes against the startling revelations made by the Commerce and Industry Minister, Prof.

Wilson Tarpeh to members of the 54th Legislature on Tuesday where he intoned that amid importers’ inability to finance the importation of petroleum products due to prevailing health crisis, the country may experience gasoline shortage in a matter of days.
“In the current situation, the level of petroleum products in the market is very low, precariously low. As we speak, our current level can go within seven to nine days and the order that we are expected to receive have been put up for another 10 days. But we are confident that the importers said we expecting 19,000 metric tons which is 6,650 gallons within the next four weeks,” the Minister of Commerce assured the public.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industries said if the government fails to import petroleum products, there is a likelihood that the country will once again suffer a major drop in the product on the market.
Minister Wilson Tarpeh said, there was nothing wrong if the government were to import petroleum products and alarmed that the Ministry of Commerce is seriously challenged by the continuous limited products of petroleum on the local market.
He further stated that some importers who failed to pay their fees had a serious effect on the end users as most of the importers lacked the financial will to supply the market.
Minister Tarpeh who was invited along with other government officials to give information on their preparedness to tackle the coronavirus if it were to get bad said, the Ministry was doing all it can to address the health emergency in the country.
He named bleach, building materials, bags of cement, rice and other essential commodities as what the Ministry believed should not be taken for granted pointing out, “In a normal certain, importation goes to the central bank, but almost 90% of importers in the country do not go to the central bank.”
For Petroleum, Minister Tarpeh said, stock should have been at a good level, but said, currently there is a likelihood that petroleum product could run off in the country, “Petroleum product is very low, so due to the limited product on the market,” he stated
“Our current level can go between seven to nine days; we were expecting other consignments, but it had been postponed to 10 days from now,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the Minister said there was 45,000 metric tons to 55000 metric tons of rice in country, therefore, there is enough consignments of rice on the market.
On the supply of cement, Minister Tarpeh said, cement is locally produced and there are about 750metric tons, meaning, there is enough cement on the market, as well as flower and frozen food, but said, due to the lack of refrigerator, the Ministry expects more frozen food on the market for citizens.
Although the government had told a press conference that there is also sufficient rice in stock in the country, this paper has observed that there are swelling queues at petty businesses in and out of Monrovia in citizens’ quest to purchase theirs in case of the unforeseen situation.
Our reporters who toured the Matadi-Sinkor belt yesterday reported that some merchants have begun complaining about an imminent shortage of rice due to the rapid spread of the pandemic among some neighboring countries.
Another trader speaking on anonymity said most of the countries they import major commodities from have closed their borders due to the virus while the government has announced that there will also be serious gasoline shortage in a not too distance future.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.