The Nigerian Government on Friday set year 2023 as the stop date for the importation of petrol into the country, shifting from the earlier set date of 2019.
It would be recalled that the immediate past Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu had in February 2017 said the country should be able to stop fuel importation by 2019.
But the Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Mele Kyari, announced a new deadline of 2023, while signing the Condensate Refinery Strategy Programme (CRSP) Front End Engineering Design (FEED) Agreement.
According to him, the strategy would deliver 20 million litres of petrol when completed.
Kyari said: “For a country that has been producing oil for over 50 years, it is really a difficulty to explain why we are still importing petroleum products.
“We have a clear mandate of Mr President to stop this and we believe this can be done between now and 2023. It is not a political deadline; it is a realistic technical deadline that we can deliver.”
Kyari further said that the NNPC would deliver functional refineries and support partners on projects that would make petrol available across the country in order to achieve the set target.
“First, we will deliver on our refineries to make them work and significant work has gone into that and we believe that we can deliver on this.
“Secondly, we will support our partners to deliver on their projects that will make gasoline (petrol) and other products available, which are essentially the many other refinery project interventions that are going on that we know and we support all of them”, he said.