By Udeme Akpan
THERE are indications that modular and conventional refinery projects are in hard times, as licenses of 17 of the refineries licensed expired without much efforts by their promoters to establish them.
Vanguard investigations show that the execution of the refinery projects was constrained by many challenges especially lack of funds and difficulty associated in securing competent technical partners.
In its updated report obtained by Vanguard, the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, responsible for the issuance of the licenses disclosed that the refineries were targeted to add additional 665,000 barrels per day (bpd) to the nation’s refining capacity, currently put at 445,000 bpd.
The report stated that 15 were for License to Establish, LTE, while two were for License to Construct, LTC, new plants.
Specifically, under the LTE the DPR document listed the affected companies including, Kainji Resources Limited, Eko Petroleum & Refining Company Limited, Frao Oil Nigeria Limited, Epic Refinery & Petrochemical Industries Limited, Master Energy Oil & Gas Limited, Cross Country Oil & Gas Limited, Grifon Energy Limited, Sifax Oil & Gas Company Limited, Capital Oil & Gas Industries Limited, All Grace Energy Limited, Green Energy International Limited, Fresh Energy Limited, Chyzob Oil & Gas Limited, Aiteo Energy Resources Limited and Associated Worldwide Company Limited.
It also stated that the companies affected under LTC are, Hi Rev Oil Limited and Amakpe International Refinery – an Akwa Ibom based plant – currently at the stage of shipping fabricated process units to Nigeria, which has already been taken over by Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) over bank loan defaults.
DPR’s spokesman, Mr. Paul Osu, said in a telephone interview that some of the affected companies have applied for renewal of their licenses, adding that applications would be treated on their merits.
However, the document also indicated that promoters of 38 refineries, out of 45 issued with licenses between 2015 and 2018 were at various stages of execution, same stages which the expired licensees got to and stopped.