By Michael Eboh
ABUJA— The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, yesterday, stated that the Port Harcourt Refinery will resume crude oil production by the end of June and will contribute about five million litres of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, also known as petrol to Nigeria’s fuel supply.
Speaking during a tour of NNPC retail outlets in Abuja, Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr. Joseph Dawha, also assured Nigerians that the perennial fuel scarcity will be addressed before the end of the week, as it currently has about 1.1 billion litres of petrol in its storage, which is equivalent to 27 days sufficiency and has deployed 428 truckloads of fuel to Abuja and across the country, in conjunction with the Pipelines and Product Marketing Company (PPMC).
According to Dawha, the NNPC is carrying out a phased implementation of the rehabilitation of the refineries, stating that work at the Port Harcourt refinery is almost complete and will soon start producing at 80 per cent of its installed capacity, contributing about five million litres of PMS per day.
He said: “We took a conscious decision that if the refineries are not in a good state to process crude for maximum gains, then there was no point in sending crude to the refineries. What we do is to try and fix it, so that by the time it starts processing the crude, then we get real value for the crude we have sent to the refineries.
“We are satisfied with the level of work carried out so far on the Port Harcourt refinery so that if we start processing crude now, we will get real value, and they will not be any value distortion that would have been the case if the refineries are not operating optimally.”
He, however, blamed the perennial fuel crisis situation in the country on distribution challenges recorded in some parts of the country, particularly in Lagos.