‘FG to save 30% forex over domestic crude refining, petroleum imports’
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, yesterday assured that ongoing efforts to ensure 100 per cent refining of crude oil by the Federal Government would reduce foreign exchange allocation by 30 per cent.
Receiving members of the House of Representatives Adhoc Committee investigating the review of pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), the minister also assured that the government was aiming at refurbishing three refineries in the country using private capital, adding that the 2019 exit date for importation of petroleum products remained sacrosanct.
Kachikwu who underscored the significance of deregulation of the downstream sector of the industry, harped on the need for attractive investment going forward, as the sale of crude oil has become unattractive across the world.
In the bid to boost Nigeria’s local refining capacity, he said the three major refining projects underway in Katsina, Lagos and Brass Area would soon be concluded.
The representatives had embarked on a working tour to the corporation to express concern over the arbitrary imposition of price on Nigerian consumers following Federal Government’s resolve to remove subsidy.
Chairman of the Committee, Nnana Igbokwe emphasised the need for Federal Government to put machineries in place to forestall diversion of petroleum products to neighboring countries.
Noting that 95 per cent of the petroleum products were being imported by the Federal Government while five per cent were imported by the private sector, he alleged that some of the oil marketers who bought petroleum products at regulated prices, diverted them to neighbouring countries where the products were sold at higher rates, at the detriment of the Nigerian citizens.
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