The Federal Government has said Nigeria will stop importing Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) and become a net exporter of petroleum products by 2019.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr.Ibe Kachikwu, said this in Port Harcourt, Rivers State when he re-commissioned the Bonny-Port Harcourt refinery crude pipeline.
Kachikwu hinged his assurance of the country to be a net exporter of petroleum products by 2019 when the co-location refineries would have come on stream.
Co-location refineries are refineries located within existing refineries.
In Nigeria’s instance, the co-location refineries would be located within the three existing refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna, bring the installed capacity to 650,000 barrels per day from the current 445,000 per day.
‘‘Going forward, by 2019, when the co-location refineries become operational, the country will stop importation of petroleum products and become a net exporter,’’ he said.
Meanwhile, the minister has announced that the Port Harcourt Refining Company now produces five million litres of Premium Motor Spirit also known as petrol with the Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company also producing two million litres of petrol per day.
Kachikwu equally said that Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company is also scheduled to start production and added that the coming on stream of the three refineries will go a long way to ensure sufficient supply and distribution of petrol across the country.
“Port Harcourt is back in production, Warri is back in production, Kaduna is receiving crude and will soon be back in production.
“Lagos is easing off now from fuel scarcity and Abuja is doing the same thing and once Kaduna begins production, the North will see a lot of improvement.”
In a related development, Kachikwu commended the contractor for the underground pipleine from Escravos to Warri and Port Harcourt refineries, Ocean Marine Solution, chaired by Capt. Hosa Okunbor, saying despite the fact that the contractor had not been paid before embarking on the job, he did a good job that would help resolve the problems confronting the oil sector.
On his part, Okunbor said: “We are very glad that, for the first time over 10 years, we are able to deliver the crude line between Esacrovos and Warri, and crude is now flowing through the pipeline which was impossible over the years. We thank God. We have created serious value for this country using our own resources, “As a company.”