NCDMB announces Nigeria’s content law will boost domestic refining

NCDMB announces Nigeria’s content law will boost domestic refining

The Executive Director of the Nigeria Content Development Board (NCDMB), Mr Simbi Wabote, said the painstaking implementation of the Nigeria Content Act has encouraged more local modular refineries to increase domestic refining.

Wabote said the Waltersmith Modular Refinery, with support from NCDMB, has so far produced and sold over 170 million liters of petroleum products in 2023, which were previously imported at poor exchange rates. He explained that the amount was equivalent to approximately 3,000 truckloads of petroleum products.

Speaking at the 12th Practical Nigeria Content Forum held in Yenagoa on Tuesday, Mr. Wabote said that the site for expanding the refinery to 10,000 barrels per day (bpd) capacity to further expand domestic refining. It was revealed that work began in September.

The theme of the 12th Practical Nigeria Contest Forum is “Deepening Nigeria’s Content Amid Divestment, Domestication and Decarbonization”.

Oil and gas industry stakeholders will gather to discuss the progress of local content in the country.

He said technical operations data shows that the number of registered industry operators has increased from 53 in 2018 to 114 in 2023, representing an increase of about 100 percent.

During the same period, service companies increased from 8,000 to 11,000, and individual registrations increased from 140,000 to almost 400,000, he said.

“In terms of our commercial ventures portfolio, we have partnered with Waltersmith to establish a 5,000 barrel per day modular refinery in Ibigwe, Imo State.

This year alone, the refinery produced and sold more than 170 million liters, or about 3,000 truckloads, of petroleum products that would previously have been imported using scarce foreign exchange.

“We are pleased that site work to expand the refinery to 10,000 barrels per day has begun in September 2023.

“Three other modular refineries are progressing towards completion and commissioning.

“For example, on the financial side, we are close to financing the rest of the Ajkel refinery. With significant support from AFREXIM Bank, we are nearing completion,” Wabote said.

The Director-General also explained that the NCDMB is considering various options and proposals for entering into partnerships in line with the Board's investment policy, and that the DuPont refinery in Edo State has essentially been completed.

He said the NCDMB in 2017 released a 10-year strategic roadmap aimed at increasing Nigerian content in the oil and gas industry to 70 per cent by 2027.

Wabote recalled that the NCDMB has rolled out five pillars and four enablers to advance the focus areas under the roadmap, each supported by short-term, medium-term and long-term initiatives.

He expressed delight that the journey of NCDMB from its starting point to the present has been transformative.

“We have completed 83% of the 96 initiatives under our strategic roadmap and are now shifting our focus to the remaining initiatives that will require some effort to deliver.

“With the support of industry, sponsors, principals, advocates, staff, contractors, host communities, and even critics, the transformative impact of implementing these initiatives has been a huge success.

“Based on this pillar, we have converted two of our portfolio of NOGAPS sites from bare land to industrial parks to support domestic manufacturing and assembly of equipment and input materials required for exploration and production activities.

“These two NOGAPS sites are essentially ready for commissioning, but we hope to begin operations with manufacturing activities scheduled for the first half of next year.

“Based on our strategic roadmap, we have established a dedicated $50 million fund to co-finance industry research and development activities,” he said.

Minister of State for Petroleum (Petroleum), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, said the establishment of NCDMB has brought many positive changes to the oil and gas industry.

Through the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, he said: Gabriel Aduda of Lokpobiri said Nigeria is committed to fostering local content.

Meanwhile, Governor Doué Diri praised the development of the NCDMB since it was established in 2010 to regulate oil companies and other companies.

Mr Diri was represented by the Bayelsa Government Secretary, Chief Gideon Ekeowe.

He said Bayelsa and the country as a whole had benefitted immensely in terms of human capital development and empowerment of individuals and communities.


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