(Copperbelt Katanga)-The Energy Regulation Board (ERB) in Zambia has issued a stern warning to Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) and Petroleum Retail Dealers regarding the deliberate withholding of petroleum product sales, particularly in the days leading up to the monthly pricing review announcement.
The caution comes in response to reports of alleged stock shortages at certain filling stations prior to the ERB’s price review announcement. Namukolo Kasumpa, the ERB Public Relations Manager, emphasized that this practice constitutes hoarding, which is strictly prohibited under the conditions of the Licence to Retail Petroleum Products.
Kasumpa expressed concerns that hoarding petroleum products creates a false perception of fuel shortages nationwide, leading to unnecessary market anxiety. As a result, she has cautioned OMCs and Petroleum Retail Dealers against engaging in any behavior that can be deemed as hoarding petroleum products.
Furthermore, Kasumpa has urged the public to promptly report any suspected instances of petroleum product hoarding to the ERB. Individuals can make reports by calling the Toll-Free Line 8484, which has been designated for this purpose.