There is overwhelming evidence that the petroleum product, precisely diesel is in short supply and this has pushed the price of that commodity far above the price of others at the nation’s pumps.
The most recent increment was occasioned not only by currency fluctuation or world price of crude, but availability.
Shell for example, is now selling diesel higher than its premium product; V Power. If anything is clear, it is that there is a looming shortage of fuel and that could result in the price of the commodity, going up beyond the reach of many motorists.
It is worrisome that an oil producing nation like Ghana, does not have one functioning refinery that, she has to depend on importation to satisfy the daily energy needs of the people.
By way of assumption, we are of the considered opinion that, if Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) , was alive and operating, maybe we wouldn’t be seeing the level of fuel increases we have had to endure at the pumps in the last three months.
The apparent shortage of diesel should serve as a wake-up call on the urgency of not building refineries and making them efficient, but also getting the only one we have to function as intended.
TOR was built in 1960 as a private limited liability company and had the Italian company – ANIC Societa per Azioni and AGIP Societa per Azioni as its major shareholders.
In April 1977, the Government of Ghana became the sole shareholder. TOR is authorized by law to operate both as a refiner of crude oil and seller of petroleum products.
TOR, has deviated from its core mandate, we will not be lying if we say the refinery, has not refined a drop of crude in more than ten years. Every government since the time of John Agyekum Kufuor, has promised to revive it, but it has always been mere rhetoric.
It is the hope of this newspaper that, what is happening in the world will serve as a wake-up call for the authourities to take pragmatic steps to bring back TOR to full operation.