A modular refinery company, Crown Refinery & Petrochemical Limited, Wednesday, partnered the Ondo State Government in the core business of refining crude oil into premium petroleum products.
At the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) ceremony signed by the state Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr. Ifedayo Abegunde, the Chairman of the Crown Refinery & Petrochemical Limited, Mr Kassim Adeleke, said his company, when fully come on stream, would be engaged in the business of manufacturing lubricants and specialised packaging of products to meet the needs of the valued clients.
According to him, the refinery will be designed to process both imported paraffinic and Nigerian crude products into finished petroleum products, oils and lubricants.
When fully taken off, Adeleke expressed optimism that the proposed initial design capacity of the plant is about 30,000 barrel per day (bpd), which is expected to be completed within 36 months and can as well be scaled up to meet 60,000 bpd.
He stated that with the existing four major refineries (approx. 445,000 bpd) in Nigeria, the West African sub-region still imports most of its petroleum products, thus, the need to fill the gap brought about the birth of the Crown Refinery & Petrochemical Limited.
“It is expected that the upcoming private refineries, ours included, would be able to meet Nigeria’s need for refined petroleum products.
The market is deep enough! For us, it is more of contributing to an industry output that will meet the demand. “Also, it is to be noted that we are taking the wider West African market, which provides additional opportunity for export.
“We are still going through the due diligence process and the final figures will be made public when that is completed. The initial cost of the project is US$500million, bearing in mind ancillary projects, like power and other infrastructure developments.
“The signing of the MoU today marks the commencement of the project and we expect it to be completed in about 36 months,” Adeleke said.
At the commencement of the operation, the chairman stated that his company would employ 2,000 employees into its workforce.
On his part, the Secretary, Ondo State Investment Promotion Agency (ONDIPA), Mr. Emmanuel Omomowo, commended the promoters of the Crown Refinery & Petrochemical Limited for coming to the state to invest.
He said the importance of the location of the company in the state can’t be over-emphasised, just as he listed the benefits to include employment generation and the expansion in the revenue base of the coffer of the state.
Also, the Senior Special Assistant (SSA) on Energy and Mineral Resources to the governor, Mr. Femi Akarakiri, admonished the management of the new company to show commitment in the MoU
signed with the state government.