By Udeme Akpan
JIL-AMBER Consortium, involving JIL Engineering & Oil Services Limited and Amber Enerji Makina Logistics, is set to deliver 1,898,460,000 litres of petrol as part of moves to enable Nigeria exit massive importation by 2019.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Consortium, Mr. Rony Kuperberg who led technical partners such as Basic Equipment (USA) and Axens Technology (North America) to Nigeria said the project would save the Federal Government over $1.7 billion in foreign exchange yearly.
In a statement sent to Vanguard, Mr. Kuperberg stated that the project would also employ at least 2,500 Nigerians and boost local production as a substantial part of procurement and site construction will be done locally in Port Harcourt and other parts of the country.
Mr. Kuperberg stated that the project would go a long way towards making Nigeria a net exporter of petroleum products in the nearest future.
He said: “This will represent a major victory for the government and the NNPC. The project covers many of Federal Government’s promises which include refinery construction, economic development, and reduction in foreign exchange dependency and employment. It will also be a major boost to the economy and Nigeria as a whole.
“It’s not a modular refinery; it’s a normal refinery with about 100,00bpd capacity. It was owned by BP, but it has been sold off now to the companies that want to bring it over from Turkey to install it here.”
He also added that, “the investors had commenced the process of relocating the refinery to be installed near the Port Harcourt Refinery under the co-location initiative.”
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation had recently said it imported 9.8 million metric tons of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS worth $5.8 billion to combat the fuel crisis that resurfaced since late last year.
The Group Managing Director of the corporation, Dr. Maikanti Baru, had said during a public hearing by the Senate Committee on Public Accounts at the National Assembly Complex in Abuja that it carried out the massive importation in fulfilment of its statutory role of supplier of last resort to ensure that Nigerians do not suffer as a result of product unavailability.
He had said the corporation’s intervention became necessary following the inability of the major and independent marketers to import the product because of the high landing cost which made cost recovery and profitability difficult owing to the regulated price regime.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Public Accounts, Sen. Matthew Uroghide, had also noted that the public hearing was a part of the committee’s duty to find lasting solutions to the problem of fuel scarcity in order to make life easy for all Nigerians.