The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Tuesday said it would soon pick financiers for the country’s refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna.
A statement in Abuja by the NNPC Spokesman, Mr Ndu Ughamadu, says this development will boost petroleum products supply and distribution in the country.
The statement quoted the NNPC Group Managing Director, Dr Maikanti Baru, as saying that agreements on the potential financiers for the refineries were being fine-tuned, following which the endorsement of the NNPC Board would be done this month.
“We are pushing towards the final selection of our financiers and we expect that when that is done, we’ll get the agreements and present them to our board meeting this month to secure their endorsement.
“Once we have the funding, we would start the rehabilitation of the refineries towards a 90 per cent capacity utilisation per stream day before the end of 2019,” Baru said.
He described the procedure for electing the financiers as painstaking, noting however that it is necessary to enable a desired closure on the subject.
Baru said the corporation was also encouraging new refining capacities to come on board, adding that there are two consortia that had indicated interest to co-locate refineries in Warri and Port Harcourt.
He said NNPC would provide whatever utility services the companies might require, such as power, processed steam, water and land, stressing that the corporation had agreed in broad terms on areas of collaboration to fast track the development.
“I’m happy to inform you that progress has been made, up to the level of an acceptable detailed engineering design and we are in the process of mobilising some of the refineries already identified for installation in Nigeria,” explained.
He said the Kaduna State Government was also championing a proposal to co-locate another refinery close to the KRPC with the intent of sourcing Nigerien crude for its operations.
Baru further explained that other Greenfield refineries were to be brought on board soon in Kano and Kaduna, saying while on board, they will source their crude from Niger Republic.
He said the designs for the proposed refineries in Kano and Kaduna were ready and their construction would commence this year.
He disclosed that the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the corporation were collaborating to encourage the establishment of modular refineries in the Niger Delta area to encourage job creation.
“So far, about 35 interests for modular refineries have been declared and the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has issued licenses to about 13 and I have been invited to the ground breaking ceremony of the first one in Bayelsa next month,” Baru revealed.
He assured that the Federal Government and the NNPC would continue to encourage private sector initiatives that would bring in competition in the petroleum products supply and distribution network so as to guarantee energy sufficiency for the country.
He hinted that the corporation was also exploring other sources of energy that could substitute petrol in cars and motorcycles, describing the use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) to power vehicles in Benin City as a right step in the right direction.
He said over 3,000 vehicles were now CNG-powered in the ancient city, making them “more secured, more efficient,” given that gas is a cleaner source of energy.
“Encouraging the development of infrastructure such as roads, railways and waterways are other means by which NNPC plans to lessen the pressure on PMS consumption,” he said.
He lauded the federal government for approving the Abuja-Kaduna-Kano pipeline project, noting that the gesture will go a long way in supporting NNPC’s transmutation into an integrated energy company.
He said the project, when completed, would create the needed back bone for Abuja’s 1,350 megawatts power plant, Kaduna’s 900 megawatts power plant and Kano’s 1,350 megawatts power plant.