The Federal Government has shifted the deadline to stop importation of petrol from 2019 to 2023.
In February 2017, the immediate past Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, had said Nigeria would stop importing refined petroleum products by 2019.
“By 2019, we should be able to exit completely the importation of petroleum products in this country,” Kachikwu had said.
But on Friday, the Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari, announced a new deadline of 2023, according to a report made available to the news men.
The NNPC is currently the sole importer of petrol.
Kyari disclosed this while signing the condensate refinery strategy programme Front End Engineering Design, adding that the strategy would deliver 20 million litres of petrol when completed.
The GMD said, “For a country that has been producing oil for over 50 years, it is really a difficulty to explain why we are still importing petroleum products.
“We have a clear mandate of Mr President to stop this and we believe this can be done between now and 2023. It is not a political deadline; it is a realistic technical deadline that we can deliver.”
On how to achieve the target, Kyari said the corporation would deliver functional refineries and support partners on projects that would make petrol available across the country.
He said, “First, we will deliver on our refineries to make them work and significant work has gone into that and we believe that we can deliver on this.
“Secondly, we will support our partners to deliver on their projects that will make gasoline (petrol) and other products available, which are essentially the many other refinery project interventions that are going on that we know and we support all of them.”
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