The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, Mele Kyari, has said that the country will stop importing petroleum products by 2023.
Kyari made the announcement at a press conference at the State House in Abuja on Tuesday.
Kyari, who spoke during the weekly ministerial briefing hosted by the Presidential Communication Team at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, noted that NNPC has the right to 20 percent of the production of the Dangote refinery.
He said the Dangote refinery, which is expected to come on stream next year, will increase the production of state refineries to meet the needs of Nigerians for petroleum products.
“The NNPC has a 20% stake in the Dangote refinery, and not only that, and we are very proud of that. Not only do we own 20 percent of the equity, but we also have the right of first refusal to supply crude oil to that plant. But we saw the challenge of the energy transition coming, we knew the time was going to come when you were going to be looking for people to buy your crude oil and you weren’t going to find it, and that means we secured the ability to sell crude oil for at least 330,000 barrels for the next 20 years.
“We also have access by right to 20% of the production from that facility. That means that in any case we have the right to take 20% of that production as part of our equity, and the refinery will be operational no later than the middle of next year.
“We expect the refinery to be operational in the first quarter, but no later than the middle of next year. When it does, just because of its 650,000 barrel capacity and different technology, this refinery will be able to crack crude oil to produce more gasoline than a typical refinery.
“That means the refinery is capable of producing up to 50 million gallons of PMS. Combined with the ability to restart our refinery, there will be no petroleum products coming into the country next year. You will not see any imports into this country next year. That’s very practical. It’s possible,” Kyari said.
“When we are done with our refineries and the Dangote refinery, with the many small initiatives that we are doing – small, modular condenser refineries that we are building – when that happens, and we are very optimistic that it will happen, you will see that this country will now be a net exporter of petroleum products, not only to the West African sub-region, but to the rest of the world.
“This will happen, and the supply flows will change. By the middle of next year, that will change. So by the middle of next year, you will no longer have to import petroleum products into this country,” Kyari added.