The believe that coming on stream of the proposed modular refineries in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria will bridge the petrol supply deficit the country is currently experiencing was punctured yesterday in Abuja, by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu.
Kachikwu made the statement while addressing State House correspondents at the end of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
Kachikwu explained that the modular refineries would essentially address the menace of illegal crude oil refining rampant in the Niger Delta, while saving the environment and providing more legal opportunities for the youth of the area.
Kachikwu also pointed out that Nigeria’s dependence on importation of petrol would be adequately checked by fixing the existing four refineries to full production capacity by 2019 as well as the upcoming Dangote Refinery in Lagos, the proposed Nigeria/Niger joint refinery and another private refinery under construction.
According to him: “Modular refineries weren’t supposed to provide a sufficient solution to your product needs. Modulars are on the average between 2000 and 5000 maybe 10,000 at most capacity per refinery, your consumption is about 630,000 barrels per day.
“That is not the essence of modular. What modular was supposed to do for us is provide work within some of these communities where people are busy doing illegal refining. It’s not meant to address the refining product gap we have in the country".