Privatisation of the nation’s downstream petroleum sub-sector will spur competition and develop the industry, says the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Ibe Kachikwu.
Although Dr. Kachikwu, a ministerial nominee and potential candidate for Minister of state for Petroleum, harped on the need to privatise the sub-sector, he revealed that the NNPC management was working towards making gas available to Nigerians.
According to him, “plans were also on to produce cylinders and make them available to all Nigerian by 2016 while gas dispensing points would be brought closer to the people”.
Kachikwu, who also disclosed that the existing national refineries in Kaduna, Port Harcourt and Warri were operating at only 25 per cent, contrary to reports that they were doing well. He declared that any of them performing below 65 per cent of capacity by December 2015 would be shut down.
The NNPC boss stressed that it was not enough for a refinery to produce at 65 per cent today and at zero per cent the next day, noting that “anytime crude was not utilised by a refinery, the government lost money.”
By Olisemeka Obeche