Nigeria aims to end refined petroleum imports within 18 months, says Kachikwu

Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, Nigeria’s Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and NNPC’s Group MD. Credit:

Nigeria, Africa’s top oil producer, wants to remove the need for imported petroleum products within 18 months, Minister of State for Petroleum Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu said on Tuesday.

“We must target between the next 12 to 18 months we should be able to get out of importations of refined products,” Kachikwu, who is also head of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), told reporters in the capital, Abuja.

Kachikwu said between $250 and $500 million would be invested in the country’s refineries over the next 18 months.

President Muhammadu Buhari has made reforming Nigeria’s oil sector a priority as a sharp fall in global oil prices has had a harsh effect on government finances. Crude exports account for around 95 percent of the government’s foreign earnings.

Kachikwu said Buhari had approved a restructuring of state oil company NNPC. “We intend to unbundle ourselves into five components: the upstream, the downstream, gas power marketing, refinery groups, and ventures,” he said.

Last year Buhari, a former military ruler, fired the NNPC board and brought in Kachikwu to lead corporate reform efforts.

Source: UPDATE 1-Nigeria aims to end refined petroleum imports within 18 months | Reuters