The Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu, has said the Federal Government was working on a policy that would ensure the country refines 50 percent of its crude in the next five years.
Kachikwu made this known on Thursday at Ibigwe-Ohaji in Ohaji\Egbema council area of Imo State during the ground-breaking for construction of the 5,000 barrels per day Modular Refinery by Walter Smith petro-chemical limited in partnership with the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB).
The minister said the policy of President Muhammadu Buahri-led administration is “go back to refining about 20 percent of our crude which will move to 50 percent day in the next five years.”
According to Kachikwu, the administration was committed to ensuring that the importation of petroleum products is curtailed by ensuring that the nation’s refineries became functional by the end of 2019.
“It would be sad if by the end of 2019 we are still importing fuel from abroad.
“So, we are committed in repairing the refineries; by that we can at least process about 500,000 barrels of crude per day,” he said.
The minister, while commending the management of Walter Smith for partnering the NCDMB on the project, said he was hopeful that the modular refinery would be inaugurated in 18 months.
The Minister who commended management of Walter Smith for partnering the NCDMB to realize the project said that he was hopeful that in 18 months the modular refinery would be inaugurated.
Executive Secretary of the NCDMB, Kesiye Wabote, said the refinery is part of its capacity development mandate and that the Board had invested $10 million to catalyze the development with 30 percent equity.
He added that the investment, which the NCDMB would divest when the modular refinery becomes fully developed and operational, was in line with the Nigeria Content 10-year strategic plan.
On his part, the Chairman of Walter Smith, Abdulrazaq Isa, said that the Walter Smith 5,000 barrels per day modular refinery was conceptualized in 2011 to mitigate the frequent outage of the third-party export trans-Niger pipeline.
He added that it was to optimize the full value of the country’s produced crude through in-country products for the domestic market .
Isa said, “When operational in 18 months time we will produce per day: Naphtha – 24,643 liters, Kerosene – 54,691 liters, Diesel – 300,168 liters, HPFO – 409,710 liters.
“The refined products will be sold and evacuated from the refinery via dedicated trucks from bay five truck rack where products are loaded into the tankers.”
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