Monday, July 22, 2024

Jah Oil Faces Unjust Criticism from Competitors for Offering More Affordable Oil, Claims GM

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By: Dawda Baldeh

Amidst the recent drop in fuel prices, Jah Oil General Manager, Momodou Hydara, has asserted that their business counterparts criticize them for disrupting the market by selling fuel at a lower price.

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Hydara addressed these accusations earlier today at the Regional Office in Brikama during the opening of a daylong training organized by the Network of Finance and Tax Reporters of The Gambia, which was funded by Jah Oil Company.

He refuted claims of selling substandard fuel, emphasizing that they price their fuel at forty-nine dalasis (D49), sacrificing one dalasis from their profit, while other companies sell it for fifty dalasis.

“As a Gambian-owned company, we are content with the modest profit we make and conduct business differently. Unfortunately, this doesn’t sit well with our counterparts, leading them to spread false information about us,” he stated.

Hydara explained that the core of the conflict lies in accusations that Jah Oil is causing market disruption by selling fuel below the government-fixed price.

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Despite these allegations, Hydara asserted that Jah Oil is not concerned with the profits of their competitors, and they willingly decrease their own profits for the sake of the Gambian community.

He pointed out that most fueling companies are not owned by local Gambians. As Jah Oil aims to take the lead in the market, their competitors respond by spreading false rumors that their fuel is substandard and causes engine damage.

“This is particularly troublesome, as everyone stores their fuel at the same storage tank, so it is unfounded to declare that Jah Oil’s fuel is inferior,” he added.

In response to claims of mixing oil with their fuel products, Hydara dismissed these as false and misleading. “It doesn’t make economic sense, as oil is more costly than petrol and gas. They certainly wouldn’t mix it and then sell their fuel at a lower price,” he said.

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Furthermore, he clarified that the fuel used for fishing boats, called premix, is not suitable for regular vehicles and would harm their engines. Hydara highlighted Jah Oil’s dedication to the country’s interests, acknowledging that some people may have misunderstood the mixing of oil and fuel for fishing boats.

Despite the criticism faced by the company, Hydara affirmed that they will continue to operate in their own way. He revealed that when Jah Oil is not involved, the price of cement increases, but it decreases once they enter the market.

Jah Oil’s participation in the cement market has attracted negative criticism from competitors who accuse them of market disruption. “Cement prices were four hundred and seventy-five dalasis in the beginning of the year, but when we entered, we sold our cement for four hundred dalasis. Within a week, those selling at a higher price also started selling at four hundred…” he explained.

Additionally, Hydara shared that the company has recently completed the construction of a storage facility with a capacity of one hundred and eighty thousand metric tons. He further stated their plans to venture into the food industry, aiming to reduce food prices for the benefit of all Gambians.

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