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IPMAN seeks govt’s nod to kick-start $3b refinery project


Refinery-kk---CopyThe Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) is seeking the Federal Government’s directive to commence its proposed $3 billion (N495 billion) refinery.

IPMAN had in July 2014, acquired over 1,000 hectares of land to build refineries that would produce 200,000 barrels of petrol per day at Itobe, Kogi, and Abbe in Bayelsa.

National Assistant Secretary of IPMAN, Ahmed Fashola, who disclosed this in a chat with journalists in Lagos recently, said the association remained committed to the project but was being challenged with the delay in the government policies and direction on the project.

“We are pursuing it very strongly because we believe in the success of the refinery. We bought 1,000 hectares of land in Kogi and Bayelsa, the states have been given approvals, but what we are waiting for is the government’s directive and policies.

“Once government approvals and consent have been given, we are ready to move to the site and commence production,” he stated.

According to Fashola, foreign investors had conducted feasibility studies on the project in August 2014 in order to commence full operation.

He therefore urged the government to look into the project on time saying delay in its directive remained a setback.Fashola said that IPMAN’s aim was to contribute its quota as a stakeholder in the project to reduce the level of capital flight by foreign investors that characterised the oil and gas sector.

“The cost of exporting crude oil and bringing back refined products will be reduced.“We want government to give us the necessary licenses and ensure an enabling environment to operate,’’ he added.

He condemned NNPC’s intention to build more retail outlets, adding that government had no business in constructing more but ensure prompt and adequate petrol distribution.

According to him, building more retail outlets by NNPC is not the nation’s problem because doing so means competing with marketers.

“We have signed a bulk purchase agreement with them. It is out of place for them to start competing with marketers.“Building more retail outlets would not solve the problem but rather NNPC should at all time make products available at all depots,’’ he added.

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