Mele Kyari, the Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has expressed great sadness over the stagnant state of refineries in Nigeria.
He has also described Nigeria’s position as a net importer of petroleum products as a shame to the country's image, noting that a country richly blessed with mineral resources like petroleum should have functioning refineries.
“Today, NNPC is challenged by the reality of our environment. Because our refineries are not operating optimally and today not at all, we become net importer of petroleum products; it is a very big shame for us as a nation, and as professionals, we can give you any excuse whether you are a chemical engineer or petroleum engineer, or scientists, whatever we are, today, it is a shame that this nation is a net importer of petroleum products and we are going to change that,” Kyari said.
“And we want to do it in two ways. One is that, NNPC will get its acts together; we will fix refineries, and there are other initiatives. Of course, there are other small interventions to support modular refineries that people are trying to fix; that we will work with the Permanent Secretary to make sure we fix it. We know why they are not doing it; the reason is very simple: everyone wants to know his transfer price in the date of the refinery, so we will fix that so that there is clarity of the proceeds of production.”
The GMD of NNPC made the above statement at the opening ceremony of the 2019 Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) Nigerian Annual International Conference and Exhibition (SPE NAICE), which held in Lagos on Monday, August 6, 2019.
Kyari explained that Nigeria has about 197 trillion cubic feet of gas but no power plants to process the abundant gas resources. He lamented that the country has been unwilling to invest in its oil and gas industry due to many insubstantial reasons like the "basis of the investment and issues of pricing of the finished produce."
He, however, promised that the corporation, NNPC, would set aside policies and platforms to put the oil and gas resources into the domestic market.