The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, has revealed that the government palns to reverse Nigeria’s status as a net importer of petrol and as such, had been supporting the establishment of modular refineries to boost indigenous production.

The Minister made the disclosure after inspecting the Azikel Hydro-Skimming Refinery, the first hydro-skimming private modular refinery being built by businessman, Azibapu Eruani in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

The refinery, which is reported to be 75 per cent completed and has the capacity to process 12,000 barrels of crude per day.

In a statement issued in Abuja by the company spokesperson, Austin Ebipade, Sylva stated that the modular refinery would facilitate the Federal Government’s objectives towards attaining self-sufficiency in the production of refined products.

According to the Minister, the Azikel refinery was critical to Nigerians and the country’s search for economic prosperity.

He was quoted in the statement as saying, “The Azikel Refinery is set to actualise the ‘export’ of refined products from Bayelsa State to other states in the Nigerian federation.

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“It comes with a daily production of 1.5 million litres of petrol, one million litres of diesel, 500,000 litres of kerosene and aviation fuel.

“It will thereby reverse the stigma on Nigeria, the world’s fifth largest producer of crude oil being a net importer of refined products.”

Sylva praised the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board for the development of the project, as well as the participation of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation and Nigerian Agip Oil Company.

The Minister also commended Total Nigeria and Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria for the supply to the Azikel refinery.

The President of Azikel Petroleum Refinery, Azibapu Eruani, pledged to work assiduously towards actualising the government’s objective of industrialising the nation.

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