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Seven modular refineries boost Nigeria’s self-sufficiency drive


Executive Secretary, Simbi Wabote of NCDMB

Seven licensed refineries with the ability to process 181,000 barrels of crude oil per day (bpd) have progressed towards completion stage in their attempt to contribute to Nigeria’s self-sufficiency in petroleum refining.

For example, the 5,000 bpd Waltersmith Refining & Petrochemical Company Limited’s modular plant, which is capable of producing naphtha, kerosene, diesel, and low pour fuel oil has made significant progress.

The company’s Approval To Construct (ATC) has been granted by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) while Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract terms have been agreed with VELEM.

The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) review session with DPR has been conducted and the company is closing out funding with Africa Finance Corporation.

Also, the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) on Friday in Lagos signed a $10 million equity investment agreement with Waltersmith Refining & Petrochemical Company Limited for the construction of 5,000 barrels per day modular refinery to be located at Ibigwe, Imo State.

Other companies, which have made similar progress are Clairgold Oil & Gas Engineering Limited, Niger Delta Petroleum Resources, Dee Jones, Energia Limited, Southfield Petrochemical & Refinery Limited, and Starex Petroleum Refinery Limited.

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote and the Director of Finance and Personnel Management, Mr. Isaac Yalah signed on behalf of the Board while the Chairman of Waltersmith, Mr. Abdulrasaq Isah and the Executive Vice-Chairman, Mr. Danjuma Sale signed for the company.
Under the Shareholders Agreement and the Share Subscription Agreement, the Board took 30 percent equity in the modular refinery.

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote said the investment decision was in line with the Board’s vision ‘to be the catalyst for the industrialization of the Nigerian oil and gas industry and its linkage sectors.’

The Board was also keen, he added, to support the Federal Government’s policy on modular refineries and meet the key objectives of the Petroleum Industry’s Seven Big Wins launched by President Mohammed Buhari in October 2016 and the Economic Recovery and Growth Program (EGRP).

According to him, “we have our exit strategy in place to ensure that the refinery reverts back as a fully owned, privately run modular refinery as our role is clearly defined as a catalyst.”

He also commended Waltersmith for developing a bankable proposition, stating that “they sorted out the project feasibility, regulatory approvals, and other pertinent details before reaching out to the Board with the value they are bringing to the table and a clear definition of the support they seek.”

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