Nigeria is to construct a 150,000 barrels per day capacity refinery in Katsina State.
Minister of State-Petroleum resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu disclosed this in an interview with Journalists soon after the signing of the Memorandum Of Understanding between Nigeria and Niger Republic on Tuesday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
“We are constructing a refinery from Niger Republic into a Nigerian border town in Katsina State, with a capacity of between 100,00 -150,000 barrels a day. It’s all dependent on the Niger crude volumes. Currently we have mentally structured our minds for a two-year period, to finish the work on the refinery but that depends on what we find during the technical studies,” he said.
Kachikwu explained that, “Although the refinery is going to be Katsina, there is potential for an extension to Kaduna but bear in mind, this started first from a perspective of they (Niger) wanting to build a pipeline from Niger to Kaduna refinery and at the Board of NNPC we shut that down because the asset quality of the crude form Niger was not the same with our own and we would have had to take almost 90 percent of our own crude to match their own 10 percent of their crude so it just didn’t make any sense. So at that point we decided to do a refinery that is targeted at their crude.”
Meanwhile, a Nigerian investor, Mr Ibrahim Zakari says he will spearhead the take off of the first 100 percent private driven refinery.
He announced that his company, Blak Oil, Energy Refinery, has mobilised about two billion Dollars in the oil sector.
“I think the two Presidents have already said everything. It is going to be private driven by investors. We are one of the investors who are willing to invest almost $2bn dollars. The funds are coming from abroad, US, Canada, India and the Middle East. It’s going to be a 50 thousand barrel refinery then we will scale it up to 100 thousand with the crude coming from Niger Republic,” he said.
Mr Zakari said it will take the company about five years to complete the project, which will be based in Mashi, Katsina State and will employ over two thousand Nigerian youths.
“It will create 2,500 direct employment and over 10 thousand indirect employments. It will cover not only Katsina and the North but the whole of Nigeria,” he added.