Privately owned Petroleum Importers Limited (PIL) has gone ahead to tender supply of fuel to the country despite uncertainties regarding who will play the role of importing fuel for national requirements between PIL and government-owned National Oil Company of Malawi (Nocma).
PIL placed advertisements in local newspapers on Friday inviting bids for the supply of 282 million litres of refine petroleum in form of petrol, diesel and paraffin for the period of 12 months from July 2016 to June 2017.
PIL general manager, Enwell Kadango, said yesterday PIL has proceeded to invite the bids because discussions as to who will handle the role were yet to be concluded while time for tendering was running out.
“The contracts for supply of fuel we have expire on June 30 and suppliers require at least two months to arrange supplies to the country. So we need to conclude tendering processes by end April if we are to secure supplies for the country from July 1,” said Kadango.
“We have been doing this for the past 16 years and we cannot allow the country to run out of supplies because of prolonged discussions on who should take over the role of importing fuel for the country,” said Kadango.
He said the government was
fully aware of what PIL was doing.
Commenting on the matter, Secretary for Energy Kester Kaphaizi confirmed that discussions on the role of fuel importation were yet to be finalised but assured Malawians that the government will not allow that to disrupt supply of fuel into the country.
“That scenario would not be allowed as the discussions are almost at the final stages.”
He said there is already an arrangement between Nocma and PIL to work out the best arrangement and make a recommendation to the government.
“We have left them to discuss the best arrangement as technical experts and once they have agreed on a formula, they would recommend to the government,” said Kaphaizi.
“This is a very sensitive issue, the study tour that was made was to see what is prevailing in other countries and whether it is possible to adopt that or not.”