Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is in the final stages of talks with consortiums including top traders, energy majors, and oil services companies to revamp its long-neglected oil refineries in an effort to reduce its reliance on imported fuel as the country’s refinery overhaul projects will begin in the second quarter 2018.
Anibor Kragha, NNPC’s chief operating officer of refineries and petrochemicals said Tuesday, according to Reuters, that by the second quarter of this year, the company will start getting the ball rolling on the refurbishment and rehabilitation exercise and believe this will run to the end of next year.
He told delegates at the African Refiners Association conference in Cape Town that “we are working with consortia right now, negotiating terms, trying to finalise the time sheets so that we can access the money, through the end of 2019 when we believe we will have the minimum 90 percent capacity utilization in place.”
NNPC has three oil refineries with a total capacity of 445,000 barrels per day (bpd), but they struggle to run anywhere near that level due to years of neglect.
According to NNPC reports, the highest capacity utilization last year was just under 37 percent, and it fell as low as 5.92 percent in November.
The government plans to give Nigeria’s refineries until 2021 to meet lower sulphur fuel requirements that will start phasing in this year for imports.