NCDMB Signs Stakeholder Agreement In Azikel 12000bpd Modular Refinery

NCDMB Signs Stakeholder Agreement In Azikel 12000bpd Modular Refinery

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Peace Obi

The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) said that it has acquired equity in the 12,000barrels per day Azikel Hydroskimming Modular refinery being constructed by Azikel Petroleum Limited at Obunagha, Gbarain, Bayelsa State.

The Board in a statement said the project when completed and operational in 2021 will produce about 1.3million litres of premium motor spirit (petrol) as well as diesel, kerosene, mixed liquefied petroleum gas (cooking gas) and a small percentage of heavy fuel oil. 

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote described the Azikel modular refinery as the second and largest so far in the Board’s portfolio of support for the construction of modular refineries in the country. Wabote noted that the partnership had huge prospects in jobs creation, value retention, petroleum products availability and in the development of in-country capability, adding “the project fits perfectly with our vision to serve as a catalyst for the development of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.”

Speaking further, Executive Secretary disclosed that the Board was in the final stages of commencing partnership in the development of another modular refinery in Calabar, Cross River state before the end of 2019.

 According to him, “we are proud to be part of the journey to wean off our dear country from massive importation of petroleum products. Our data analytics show that we can more than double the contribution of the oil sector to the Gross Domestic Product if we achieve the current growth trajectory with the refurbishment of existing refineries, completion of the Dangote Refinery, and ongoing modular refineries, to bring refining to about 50 per cent of our oil production capacity from the current level of below 20 per cent.”

He further explained that the Board’s intervention extends to gas processing and utilization and it had progressed discussions with partners on the establishment of LPG cylinders manufacturing plant, LPG depots, and gas processing facilities. ’’One of the projects of interest is the establishment of an Inland LPG Depot in Abuja to complement Federal Government’s LPG Penetration Initiative. This project is part of the gas value chain as it utilises condensate which is one of the by-products from gas processing.”

He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the licensing of modular refineries as a strategic solution for promoting local refining of petroleum products, job creation and industrialization. He also announced that Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) would partner with Azikel Refinery by providing its crude feedstock from its oil fields.

The President of Azikel Petroleum Limited, Dr Eruani Azibapu Godbless who described NCDMB’s partnership in the modular refinery project as historic said that the Board has gone beyond its role as a regulatory agency to also, serve as a catalytic agent to develop the infrastructure needed to address insufficiency of refined petroleum products in Nigeria.

He said, “The equity participation from NCDMB sends positive signals not just to the local people but to the international community. This confirms to the international community that the Nigerian state is ready to revive the economy and that Bayelsa State is well positioned to ensure that more investors come in and domicile their investments.”

Stating that the company was licensed in 2015 along 36 other licensed modular refineries, Eruani confirmed that products from Azikel Refinery would meet the petroleum needs of residents in Bayelsa and the Niger Delta region, noting that ”we are creating industrialization and employment, rejigging the economy of the Niger Delta people and Bayelsa State.”

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote and the Director of Finance and Personnel Management, Mr Isaac Yalah signed the Shareholders Agreement and the Share Subscription Agreement during a ceremony at the Board’s office on Monday in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, while the President of Azikel Petroleum Limited, Dr Eruani Azibapu Godbless and Vice President, Mr Presley Asemota signed for the company.

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