By Ikenna Omeje
The $100 million fabrication facility of Lee Engineering and Construction Limited will be ready by the 4th quarter of 2019.
This was disclosed by the company’s General Manager, Business Development and Relations, Mr. Godwin Abulime, while interacting with newsmen at the just concluded Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston, Texas United States.
When asked when the project will be ready, he said,” Between now and last quarter of this year, it will come on stream.”
The $100 million fabrication plant in Warri, Delta State is intended to meet the fabrication needs of both local and multinational companies in the oil and gas sector in Nigeria and beyond.
The oil and gas production plant is dedicated to produce high pressure vessels, heat exchangers, gas-heat exchangers, water bath heaters, glycol, skits, scrubbers, process modules, tanks and flare systems as well as carry out maintenance on existing pressure/process vessels and its components- first of its kind in Nigeria.
Abulime said that the company was at the OTC to let the world know what the company has been doing.
“As I speak presently, following the Nigeria Content Act, trying to promote indigenization of technology, we are currently building a fabrication facility in Warri, which has capacity of manufacturing Pressure Vessels , Heat Exchangers, Process Skids and other oil and gas tools.
“That’s the major reasons we said let’s come here to let the world knows that these things are possible in Nigeria and we are doing it. The Chief Operating Officer, Upstream of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Engineer Bello Rabiu who represented Group Managing Director Dr. Maikanti Baru) was here to open this event. And I equally told him that this is what we have been doing. I think everybody is happy with what Lee Engineering is doing – where we are investing over $100 million to create that facility. So, that’s what we have been doing. That’s what we have come here to showcase to let everybody know about other projects that Lee Engineering has been able to execute over time, which hitherto were projects that only major multi-national companies can execute. But we are doing all of that excellently and you don’t need to hide us and that was one of the reasons we said let us come and let the world know it’s possible and we are doing it in Nigeria very well. That’s the reason,” he said.
Abulime noted that Lee Engineering has grown bigger in providing services in the oil and gas industry, stressing that the facility will bring foreign exchange to Nigeria and boost the transfer of technology in the oil and gas industry.
“So, we have grown to that level and we are doing that because we know that basically that facility also will bring foreign exchange to Nigeria. These are currencies, which before now were being sent out to get these things to Nigeria. But since we are doing that, we know that will bring foreign exchange to Nigeria and also bring transfer of technology to Nigeria.
“As I speak now, over 40 Nigerians, our staff have been trained in Belgium and Netherlands to master the skills of how to do these activities. We are running that with our foreign partners VDL KTI, and they are really giving us some support. You know also, that’s the intention of Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board – to be able to localize and bring these things back home,” he stated.
He added that, ” Lee Engineering has delivered well over 30 major projects. I’m not talking about other smaller ones – key projects. These projects were delivered excellently -basic engineering, from engineering to Procurement, construction, installation and commissioning.”
Since oil was discovered in Nigeria in 1956, equipment and facilities used by the oil multinationals have largely been imported from abroad.
To change the narrative of importing equipment, Lee Engineering and Construction Company established the $100 million facility that would engage in the production of some of the equipment needed in the oil and gas industry.