WORLD Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association has put investments in cylinder and logistic infrastructure in the Nigerian gas sector at N247 billion.
Besides, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has read the riot act to importers and manufacturers of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) gas cylinder, promising to clamp down on defaulters of the new guidelines.
SON also raised the alarm over the number of sub-standard gas cylinders in circulation, saying ‘it is a disaster waiting to happen’.
The Chairman, of the association, Renzo Bee, who made this disclosure yesterday in Lagos at the second yearly conference of the Nigerian LPGas Association, said that there was need for more investments to widen the scope of LPG sub-sector in the country.
Bee also stressed the need for the Federal Government to introduce policies and regulatory framework that would encourage more foreign and local investments in the industry.
According to him, the need for stakeholders to stop the unclear status of cylinders in the country, cannot be over emphasised, saying that issues of ownership, cross filling, free access to LPG, should be addressed.
The Director-General of SON, Dr. Joseph Odumodu who was represented by the Head, Metrology, SON, Obiora Manafa, said that the influx of such sub-standard cylinders would no longer be tolerated.
Reading the riot act for importers of LPG cylinders, Odumodu stated: “All importers of cylinders shall have a defined programme for the maintenance of cylinders with trained personnel.
“All importers of LPG cylindes shall sign an understanding for SON to take full responsibility of the maintenance and recertification of imported cylinders. All importers seeking the renewal of their approval shall meet the requirements of bringing cylinder into the country as stipulated in the SON guideline and expiring date must be engrave on the cylinders”.
Lamenting the current practice in the industry, Odumodu said that cylinders were imported or produced and sold to users in Nigeria without any programme of requalification. “There is no programme for maintenance of cylinders by importers and markets; substandard cylinders are in circulation; and there are cylinders of 15 years and above in circulation and these could explode at any time”.
Odumodu noted that over the years, many liquefied petroleum gas refilling plants in the country, have failed to conform with the specifications set by the Nigeria Industrial Standards (NIS).
He stated: “The number of sub-standard refillable gas cylinders in circulation has also reached an alarming proportion, hence we deem it necessary to organise this stakeholder’s forum to sensitize manufacturers and end users”.
He warned that SON would, very soon, seize and destroy gas cylinders and their accessories imported into the country without its approval and certification.
The President, NLPGA, Auwalu Ilu, called on government to review the tariff on LPG equipment to zero per cent to encourage massive importation of LPG cylinder into the country.
He stated: “Nigeria uses LPG mostly for domestic cooking and the means of getting this product to the consumer is via the cylinders hence the reason for this year’s conference.
“Until recently, most cylinders are unbranded and owned by the consumers and it has been the consumer’s responsibility to ensure that they are fit and safe for his use. Most consumers have no idea about maintenance and requalification of cylinders and also have no problem purchasing second hand cylinders. As a result of this, there are a number of substandard cylinders in circulation”.
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