By Kuvee Kangueehi
Namibian motorists could face a serious shortage of unleaded fuel after a vessel from the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (Namcor) failed to deliver a consignment last week Friday.
However, Namcor Public Relations Officer, Katrina Sikeni, denied the report saying no company vessel has been delayed and that all is in order.
A source in the petroleum industry told this reporter that unleaded fuel, which is used by most new vehicles, was supposed to be off-loaded last week Friday at the port of Walvis Bay but Namcor informed oil companies at the last minute that the vessel will no longer come and will only arrive eight days later.
The source claimed that the country is currently running low on unleaded fuel and it could run out before the vessel arrives over the weekend. The source added that some oil companies at the moment cannot afford to supply unleaded fuel in bulk as they have little left in stock.
The source called on motorists not to panic and said if the consumers engage in panic buying because of the looming shortage, the country will run out of fuel before the weekend.
However, the Managing Director of Namcor, Sam Beukes, through the company’s public relations officer denied that their vessel containing unleaded fuel was delayed and that there could be a shortage of unleaded fuel.
Sikeni said no vessel from Namcor was delayed and the last consignment of petroleum products as scheduled successfully discharged diesel and jet fuel on Sunday. She added that the other vessel is due to arrive on Friday and contains other petroleum products.
Meanwhile, media reports in South Africa have warned motorists to brace themselves for another petrol price increase, the highest increase South Africans have ever experienced.
The reports claim that it is expected that petrol will increase by 45 to 60 cents a litre and this will bring the price of unleaded petrol to about N$8 a litre. Economist, Chris Hart, told BuaNews on Wednesday that the petrol increase expected in April is due to the weak currency and the higher crude oil prices.
“Although we are anticipating stability in the middle of the year, but by the end of the year, petrol price will be higher than it is now, just above R8 a litre,” he said.
Hart said he does not foresee any petrol price decrease in the near future.
The Department of Minerals and Energy said the increase is due to higher prices of crude oil. According to economists, this would bring the petrol price to the highest peak ever.