By Godwin Oritse
NIGERIAN may have moved closer to the realization of the ideals of the Local Content policy with the commencement of partnership between an indigenous Oil and Gas logistics provider, LADOL and Korean-based Samsung company, in the establishment of an integration facility in the country.
The $250 million dollars Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) platform, is expected to blaze the trail as first of its kind Africa in Greenfield project development in the region’s Oil and Gas industry.
The Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics base (LADOL)where the project is to be sited, is said to be the only indigenous logistics services provider in the country, strategically located off the Apapa seaports in Lagos.
The partnership was set in motion during the week with the two organizations did a joint presentation of what the project involves, to the admiration of top officials of the Nigerian Content Development and monitoring Board (NCDMB), Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), as well as representatives of the International Oil Companies (IOCs).
NPA’s General Manager, Ports Planning, Mr. Sunny Nwobi represented the managing Director, Omar Suleiman; and accompanied by the GM Western Zone, Mr.Mohammed D. Bulangu; the General Manager, Corporate Affairs Chief Michael Ajayi; and the Port manager of Apapa Ports Complex, Mr. Joshua Asanga.
The Local Content board was similarly led by Engineer Taiwo Elegba who represented the Executive secretary, Eng, Ernest Nwakpa. In attendance also were Engnrs, Ikpomnwonsa Oviasu, and Okorie Chijoke.
Chairman of LADOL, Mr. Ladi Jadesimi, who conducted the guests round the facilities prior to the presentations, said the partnership had become necessary in order to set the pace for future building of FPSO facilities to serve the country and beyond.
According to him, no country in Africa for now, has the facility to integrate the project, adding that if Nigeria embarks on it now, “what it means is that all the jobs, all the foreign exchange, trainings for the FPSO, will now flow to Nigeria, rather than the trend continuing with the capital flight that goes with it”.
Jadesimi noted that up till now, such structures were still being built and floated abroad, adding that with the commencement of the project, only the shelf will now be transported to Nigeria where all the facilities will be fabricated and installed locally.
He pointed out that by so doing, more than half of the entire cost will now be expended in Nigeria with all the ancillary benefits of jobs creation, technology transfer and trainings.
Jadesimi also pointed out that in terms of benefits to Nigeria as a Free Zone, “when they bring in the shelf and build –in all the fabrications in Nigeria, if the facility is to leave for the offshore located within the country, customs duties will be paid and this runs into billion of naira. On the other hand, no duty is paid if the facility is taken to an offshore base outside of the country”.
Also speaking on the project, leader of the Samsung Korea team, Mr. Harris Lee, said the project was targeted at making Nigeria the central hub for Oil and Gas engineering and fabrication in the West-African sub region.