Strong indications emerged Monday from the hierarchy of Dangote Refinery assuring that about 50 per cent of its production profile will meet the intractable local petroleum product demand after all.
The group’s Executive Director, Devakumar Edwin, who made this this known in an interview with S&P Global Commodity Insights on Monday, stated that the refinery would receive its first crude cargo in two weeks’ time and would begin producing up to 370,000 barrels per day of diesel and jet fuel in October 2023.
According to him, “Basically, if you look at our production profile, 50% of my production will meet 100% of the requirements of the country.
“Excess gasoline – which will be 10 ppm sulfur Euro 5 quality — will be exported to other African markets as well as the US and South America, although the volumes will be relatively small.
“Meanwhile, jet fuel will be exported to Europe and diesel will be sold in sub-Saharan Africa”.
S&P also quoted Edwin as saying the refinery would be “enormously beneficial to the country” by establishing a reliable supply of “environmentally-friendly” refined products and bringing “a huge amount of foreign exchange into the country”.
While emphasizing that “We are just waiting for the first vessel. And so, as soon as it comes in, we can start,” he added that the refinery would initiate a gradual increase in petrol production, aiming to reach an impressive 650,000 barrels per day by November 30.
Speaking on the shift in the original timeline, Edwin explained that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPCL) had already committed its crude oil to another entity on a forward basis, causing a temporary delay.
He said that the setback is momentary, and the refinery would soon run exclusively on Nigerian crude oil as of November 2023.
He noted that the Nigerian oil would be purchased in US dollars, and not naira because it is in a free trade zone on the outskirts of Lagos.
However, the NNPCL will supply some crude at knockdown prices due to its equity stake.
Edwin further stated that, aside from heavy Angolan grades, the Dangote refinery can process most African crudes, as well as Middle Eastern Arab Light and even US light-tight oil.
“We can take even some of the Russian grades… if the global system opens up to allow us to receive them.