The Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Dr. Emma Ibe Kachikwu has disclosed that three foreign investors have indicated interest in the nation’s oil sector. According to the Minister, the foreign investors are ready to finance the over $1 billion needed to repair the 3 ailing Nigerian refineries in a bid to get them up and running once more.
The Minister said that the move is in line with the government’s strategic plan to meet local oil needs through local production and to ultimately stop the importation of refined fuel by the year 2019.
The oil sector strategic plan which has been much publicized by the government has three components which aimed at boosting and stabilizing petroleum production, rolling out greenfield petroleum products, and the coming on board of modular refineries to encourage local production and reduce importation of refined oil products.
The Nigerian petroleum sector has remained a hard nut to crack by successive governments. It has been a sector of controversy and crisis. Allegations of corruption and lack of transparency has remained synonymous with the sector. Some of the nation’s refinaries have remained moribund for years prompting the importation of refined oil products.
It is of note that the current government have come up with plans and polices to revive the sector stem the lose of foreign exchange through fuel importation. So far, the plans and polices are yet to yield concrete results as we look up to 2019 when the authorities say fuel import is going to stop and local production in full gear.