The Department of Petroleum Resources in Cross River has cautioned depot owners against selling petroleum products to unlicensed marketers.
Bassey Nkanga, DPR Operations Controller in the state, gave the warning on Thursday in Calabar during a meeting with depot owners operating at the Calabar tank farm.
Nkanga explained that selling petroleum to unlicensed marketers could lead to diversion of the product to nearby countries.
According to him, such product could be difficult to trace because the marketers were using fictitious names to buy the product.
He frowned at a situation whereby some depot owners were still selling the product to unlicensed marketers without valid operating license.
He said: “As a regulating agency, we have been mandated to sanction any depot that is caught selling petroleum products to unlicensed marketers.
“When you sell this product to unlicensed marketers, you make it difficult for us to trace these products that are meant for consumption in the state.
“Some of these products given to unlicensed marketers are not accounted for. What if they are diverted to other countries?
“We are not against any company that want to sell product; all we want is for the product to be sold to marketers with valid operating license.”
He urged marketers to log unto its online portal and renew their operating license for 2019.
Ahead of the yuletide season, the Operations Controller cautioned depot owners against price hike and bulk selling to a particular marketer.
He said that more vessels were expected to discharge product to various depots to prevent any occurrence of scarcity during the Christmas period and beyond.
Responding, Okon Alex, an official from Mainland Oil and Gas, said the company always adhered to stipulated guidelines of the DPR.
Alex added that the company had embarked on training of its personnel on safety of all operational facilities in the depot.