The move by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to acquire equity stakeholdings in private refineries in the country is in line with a Federal Government policy directive ro safeguard the National Energy Security, the Group Managing Director of the Corporation, Mele Kyari, has said.
Kyari who was quoted in a statement by the NNPC spokesperson, Kennie Obateru, said the NNPC currently considering equity participation in at least six private refineries in the country.
The new directive by the Federal Government stipulates the mandatory participation of the Corporation in any privately-owned refinery that exceeds 50,000 barrels per day capacity, in keeping with its statutory role of safeguarding national energy security.
Kyari said the Corporation has already identified at least six ongoing refinery projects it is planning to negotiate for equity participation.
Five of the affected refineries are at the development stage, apart from Dangote Refinery which is the largest among them.
Obateru, explained that NNPC, as the Nigerian State-owned Oil Company, primarily has a dual role of providing stewardship for the nation’s hydrocarbon resources and adding value to the resources for the benefit of all Nigerians and other interest groups.
These roles, he said, enable the corporation to achieve the twin objectives of providing energy security for the country and stimulating the nation’s economic development and growth.
He said NNPC’s strategic objective to ensure energy security and stimulate economic growth with limited resources required it to consider strategic partnerships with competent investors in sectors of the oil and gas value chain, especially where it currently operates on a sole-risk basis.
The oil refining sector, he noted, is one of such segments where NNPC was revisiting its strategy in order to strengthen domestic refining capacity and guarantee National Energy Security.
“The new vision is to grow domestic refining capacity, improve petroleum products supply from our local refineries and become a net exporter of petroleum products,” he said.
The NNPC spokesperson said the Corporation’s move to seek equity participation in the private refineries would not undercut its commitment to the rehabilitation of its own refineries and strengthen the domestic refining sector.
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