Nigeria’s refinery overhaul projects to start in second quarter: NNPC

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CAPE TOWN – Refinery overhaul projects will begin in Nigeria as soon as the second quarter, an official from state oil company NNPC said on Tuesday.
NNPC is in the final stages of talks with consortiums including top traders, energy majors and oil services companies to revamp its long-neglected oil refineries in an effort to reduce its reliance on imported fuel.

“We believe that by the second quarter of this year we will …start getting the ball rolling on the refurbishment and rehabilitation exercise and believe this will run to the end of next year,” said Anibor O. Kragha, NNPC’s chief operating officer of refineries and petrochemicals.

“We are working with consortia right now, negotiating terms, trying to finalise the time sheets so that we can access the money… through the end of 2019 when we believe we will have the minimum 90 percent capacity utilization in place,” he told delegates at the African Refiners Association conference in Cape Town.

NNPC has three oil refineries with a total capacity of 445,000 barrels per day (bpd), but they struggle to run anywhere near that level due to years of neglect. According to NNPC reports, the highest capacity utilization last year was just under 37 percent, and it fell as low as 5.92 percent in November.

The government plans to give Nigeria’s refineries until 2021 to meet lower sulphur fuel requirements that will start phasing in this year for imports.

Reporting By Wendell Roelf, writing by Libby George; editing by John Stonestreet

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Godwin Okafor is a financial journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and the Founder Naija247news Media Ltd He has over 16 experiences in journalism, which cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career in Business Day, Where he was a senior editorial graphic artist, before he left to start Naija247news, An Online Financial Newspaper in 2010. He has won series of awards and he is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.com and also sits on the board of Students In Business Awards, (SIBA).

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