The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has started meetings with stakeholders in the LPG value chain this week to deliberate on possible timelines for the implementation of the Cylinder Recirculation Model.
Already, the National Petroleum Authority has said that it is ready to begin the implementation of the Cylinder Recirculation Model of LPG distribution in the first quarter of 2019.
President Akufo-Addo, shortly after the Atomic Gas explosion on 7th October 2017, directed the implementation of the model which will involve the filling of LPG cylinders at designated refilling plants for onward distribution to consumers through retail outlets to be known as exchange points.
Speaking to Citi Business on the delayed implementation of the Cylinder recirculation model, the Chief Executive Officer of the NPA Alhassan Tampuli, said it is important not to rush the implementation of the policy.
“CRM is in motion. We currently are at different phases, and as you know with good policies it takes quite a bit of time to germinate. Because you need to have all the ground work done as far as the safety procedures, the guidelines, the legislations among others.”
While calling for patience with regards to the implementation of the policy, Alhassan Tampuli said stakeholders have been involved to finish all the fundamental engagements.
“We have currently finished all the ground works. We have come out with the requirements for licensing for bottling plants, distribution outlets as well as transport companies as far as the distribution of LPG and LPG cylinders are concerned. We have issued some licenses with one bottling plant being in the process of being inaugurated.”
Cylinder Recirculation Model Rollout
The purpose of this new model according to Mr. Samuel Asare-Bediako, coordinator for Unified Petroleum Price Fund is to: “Develop a market-driven structure to ensure safety, increased access and adoption of LPG and ensure the existence of robust and standard health, Safety and environmental practices in the production, marketing, and consumption of LPG.”
Ghanaians will be required to send their empty cylinders to LPG Distribution centers or sub-distributor outlets to exchange with filled cylinders or engage the services of door-to-door delivery service providers.
Empty cylinders at retail outlets will then be transported to bottling plants for refilling for onward distribution. New consumers who do not have cylinders will have to make cash deposits to be given new ones.
The Liquefied Petroleum Gas Marketing Companies will be responsible for procuring, branding, and maintaining the cylinders Mr. Asare-Bediako told the media. Specialized trucks will have to be used to transport the filled cylinders from the bottling plants to the retail stations or exchange points, where consumers will exchange their empty cylinders for filled ones.
With a successful rollout of the Cylinder Recirculation Model, Ghana will join other West African countries like Togo, Benin, Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, Senegal, and many others in what experts say is a “safer and an environmentally friendly” distribution of LPG.