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Buhari smiles

FG watering down fuel crisis with $1.5bn PH refinery rehabilitation approval?

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Strong indication emerged Wednesday pointing to the fact that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has officially reacting to the ongoing nationwide confusion on fuel pump price with the approved $1.5 billion for the rehabilitation of the largest refining company in the country, Port Harcourt Refinery.
Otherwise, at its 38th virtual meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday approved $1.5 billion for the rehabilitation of the Port Harcourt Refinery.
Business Hilights recalls that the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) had in 2015 during campaign for its first term, assured Nigerians of not only rehabilitating all four nation’s moribund refineries, but will build new ones each in the six geo-political zones.
However, barely two years to the end of its eight year rule, it announced plan to rehabilitate only one in a process that will even end over two years after the end of the tenure in 2023.
Addressing the media shortly after the FEC meeting, Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, who had been at the centre of the fuel price hike controversy, said the rehabilitation will be done in three phases of 18, 24 and 44 months.
He said the contract was awarded to an Italian company, Technimount SPA, who are experts in refinery maintenance.
He said the funding has three components from Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), budgetary allocations provisions and Afreximbank.
Sylva who addressed State House Correspondents alongside his colleagues, Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire and Budget and National Planning, Clement Agba, assured that local content is fully involved in the job.
He said: “The Ministry of Petroleum Resources presented a memo on the rehabilitation of Port Harcourt refinery for the sum of 1.5 billion, and that memo was $1.5 billion and it was approved by council today.
“So we are happy to announce that the rehabilitation of productivity refinery will commence in three phases. The first phase is to be completed in 18 months, which will take the refinery to a production of 90 percent of its nameplate capacity.
“The second phase is to be completed in 24 months and all the final stage will be completed in 44 months and consultations are approved.
“And I believe that this is good news for Nigeria.”

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