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Stakeholders brainstorm on full operation of modular refineries

A modular refinery

Stakeholders in the oil sector have resolved that full operation of modular refineries as being proposed, will go a long way in solving Nigeria’s fuel crisis.

The stakeholders made the observation yesterday at the second stakeholders’ engagement on the Integration of Modular/Artisanal Refinery Operations into the Oil and Gas Sector in Abuja.

They also discussed current challenges of revenue losses, petroleum products scarcity, environmental pollution and the way out.

The Senior Special Assistant to President on Niger Delta Affairs, Ita Enang, explained that the aim of the meeting was to discuss ways out of the country’s present oil challenges.

He said: “We are here to discuss and to negotiate the way out of where we are in Nigeria. “

Enang, also the convener of the meeting, said the gathering was to review the causes of loss of oil revenue due to irregular activities in the creeks and along oil pipelines and the attendant effect on the nation’s economy.

According to him, the world is faced with an energy crisis, and all the nations of the world are now looking to internal sources of solving their problems and Nigeria is not left out.

“Domestic refining, which we call artisanal refining, is part of the internal sources of solving these problems, but these refined products are going into our generators, going into our systems, and we still call it illegal refining.

“But we are driving our cars with it and we still call it illegal refining, people are feeding from it and we still call it illegal artisanal refining.”

Enang said it was high time Nigeria regularised the artisanal refined products for the purpose of saving the economy.

…Federal University of Petroleum Resources has tested the products and it is actually in line in terms of specificity with others that are imported into this country.

The Vice-Chancellor, Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun, Prof. Akpofure Rim-Ruke, who welcomed the idea of the forum, said it would salvage the challenge of fuel crisis and loss of revenue.

According to him, the youths are using the local process of producing local gin to produce the fuel which is the local technology that works.

“Having this at the back of our mind to see that the products they have produced, Federal University of Petroleum Resources has tested the products and it is actually in line in terms of specificity with others that are imported into this country. So, the technology is working,” he said.

On the way forward, Rim-Ruke said the institution had developed an indigenous modular refinery and it was already on ground and the authority of the institution had all it took to train the youths on it.

The Executive Secretary, Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Dr Orji Ogbonnaya Orji, assured the stakeholders of the agency’s support for the full operation of modular refineries in the country.

According to him, the project is a passionate one, not only for the oil sectors but for the entire nation for a way out of the fuel crisis and loss of the nation’s revenue.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the forum attracted captains of industry, Domestic Refiners Association of Nigeria, security agencies, among others.

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