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Nigeria targets fuel sufficiency, exports by 2020

By Suleiman Salau
22 April 2015   |   4:07 am
IF the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the incoming government made good of their promises, Nigeria may be inching towards attaining self sufficiency and eventually become a net exporter of refined petroleum products by 2020.

FUELIF the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the incoming government made good of their promises, Nigeria may be inching towards attaining self sufficiency and eventually become a net exporter of refined petroleum products by 2020.

The Group Managing Director, NNPC, Joseph Dawha, in a presentation on ‘The Challenging Face of the Oil and Gas Industry: Nigeria’s Future Strategy in a Global Context’, said the aspiration could be realised with the government’s support for establishment of new refineries.

Besides, the NNPC boss added that the corporation is currently working on a new strategy of progressive rehabilitation and upgrading of the refineries and it is expected that they will all attain at least 90 per cent capacity utilisation by next year (2016).

He said: “NNPC has continued to intensify efforts at repositioning the refineries for better performance even as we re-strategise to face current operating challenges. This strategy would ensure maintenance of all the refineries in parallel rather than the previous rehabilitation strategy and all the refineries will attain at least 90 per cent capacity utilisation by next year.

“With government support for the establishment of new refineries, Nigeria may attain self-sufficiency and become a net exporter of petroleum products by the year 2020.”

The nations four refineries in Kaduna, Port Harcourt (old and new) and Warri has about 445,000 installed capacity, but the NNPC recently said it would hit 400,000bpd production in 2016 by the time it completes the rehabilitation of the refineries.

The Green Field Refinery projects are also a major driver but the fate of the N3.7 trillion projects are yet unknown, as the Green Field Refinery earmarked for Lagos, Bayelsa and Kogi states, are yet to commence few years after the agreement was signed.

But the Dangote refinery may be a complementary factor as it is expected to take-off in 2017 with capacity to refine about 650,000 barrels of crude oil per day.

Although the initial plan was to have 450,000bpd refining capacity, Dangote group said it had since gone back to the drawing board to enlarge the plant to 650,000bpd.

Describing the present situation where the country produces crude oil but goes abroad to buy refined products as unacceptable, the group said Nigeria as a leading producer of crude oil should also be credited with similar local refining capacity.