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Stakeholders commend FG for reviving Port Harcourt Refinery

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Some stakeholders in oil and gas industry have commended the Federal Government for revamping the Port Harcourt Refinery, expected to begin partial operation in the first quarter of the year.
The stakeholders who spoke with the Newsmen in Lagos on Thursday, also lauded the initiative geared towards eliminating fuel importation.
Newsmen reports that the Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr Timipre Sylva, on Jan. 9, revealed that the rehabilitation of the 60,000 bpd refinery was nearing completion and would become operational in the first quarter of the year.
Sylva made this known while giving an update on the Port Harcourt Refineries during the Ministry of Petroleum Resources 2022 scorecard in Abuja.
Mr Joe Nwakwue, an oil and gas consultant, said: “Bringing back the refinery to operations is a welcome development and one hopes that the other two refineries would also be resuscitated shortly.
“We need to exit fuel importation.
“The Federal Government does not have the resources presently to invest in the brownfield or even any greenfield refinery.
“I support and commend the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd. (NNPCL) approach of taking minority equity in private refineries.
“This, essentially, helps derisk those investments, while also providing a path to national energy security,” he said.
The former president of the Society of Petroleum Engineers said his position had always been for government to sell its holding and give up operational control of the refineries to competent private sector operators.
“This model allows the infusion of capital and know-how required for sustainable operation of these assets, while the government retains minority stake,” he added.
Mr Chinedu Okoronkwo, the National President of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), lauded the Federal Government initiative towards reviving the refinery.
According to Okoronkwo, “This is good news. To start with, it will reduce the pressure on importation of refined petroleum products.
“If the refinery bounces back it will go a long way to argument local production.
“Obviously, it is a cheering news for marketers and Nigerians,” he said.
Mr Tunji Oyebanji, the Chief Executive Officer of 11, said the Port Harcourt Refinery coming back on stream with production was definitely good news for the industry and Nigeria.
Oyebanji said: “This development is consistent with the promise of the GCEO of NNPC.
“I have never been a fan of government being involved in business.
“I believe that it’s part of the reason the refineries became moribound in the first place.
“I think the refineries should be sold to capable and qualified private sector operators,” he said.
Mr Henry Adigun, an energy consultant, said: “I think it is a good thing for government to revive the refinery.The idea is great and a laudable initiative.
“The refineries now belong to NNPC Ltd. It should make a decision based on a cost benefit analyses.
“That way, it will see how it can maximise returns. At the moment government does not own any refineries.”
Newsmen reports that Port Harcourt Refineries comprise two units, with the old plant having a refining capacity of 60,000 barrels per day (bpd) and the new plant 150,000 bpd, both summing up to 210,000 bpd.
The refineries located at Alesa Eleme, approximately 25km east of Port Harcourt, were the largest in Nigeria before the coming of the Dangote Refinery currently under construction in Lagos.
The refinery was commissioned in 1965 with an initial capacity of 35,000 barrels per day and was later upgraded to 60,000 barrels per day in 1972.
The new refinery was commissioned in 1989 with an installed capacity of 150, 000 barrels per day, bringing its combined crude processing capacity to 210, 000 barrels per day.

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Independent petroleum producers, others set agenda for incoming administration

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The Independent Petroleum Producers Group (IPPG) has called on the incoming administration of Sen. Bola Tinubu to address the bottlenecks mitigating against industry growth and energy security.

The IPPG Chairman, Mr Abdulrazaq Isa, made the call on Monday in Abuja at the sixth edition of the Nigeria International Energy Summit (NIES).

Isa said the administration’s agenda for the industry should be geared toward improving investor confidence through the effective implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) and strengthening regulatory institutions.

He said the incoming administration should arrest the menace of crude theft across the Niger Delta which still lingered in spite of the recent successes recorded by the Federal Government.

Isa listed others as harnessing the nation’s hydrocarbon asset, particularly gas, to catalyse and rapidly industrialise the economy, building a broader value-creating midstream (gas processing plants) and downstream (refineries) and transforming Nigeria into a product supplier.

He emphasised the need to eliminate industry-wide subsidies for all hydrocarbon and refined products as they remain detrimental to the growth of a vibrant industry.

Isa also called for an immediate repositioning of the industry.

“The Nigerian oil and gas industry has a very limited window to get things right and must work toward the rapid exploitation of its vast hydrocarbon assets for the socio-economic transformation and deploying same to guarantee our energy security.

“It is instructive to note that this edition of the NIES will be the last of this current administration.

“It is on that note and on behalf of the Board of Trustees and the Governing Council of the IPPG I commend President Muhammadu Buhari, for his unwavering commitment to the survival and growth of our industry.

“Under his leadership, his administration has delivered unprecedented milestones across the entire industry, notably, the enactment PIA in 2021 which has boosted investor confidence after a two-decade lull in activities.

“This landmark legislation has begun the transformation of Nigeria’s oil and gas industry and laid a solid foundation for the growth and development of the industry for future generations,’’ he said.

Also speaking, Dr Omar Farouk, the Secretary-General, African Petroleum Producers’ Organisation (APPO), called for enabling environment for African energy security.

Farouk listed challenges in the African energy industry as lack of funding, technology and reliance on foreign markets.

He said for seven decades that Africa had been producing petroleum; it had relied essentially on external finance and always depended on foreign technology and to some extent expertise to produce the products.

Farouk said that these three challenges had been the focus of APPO in the last three years and it had concluded that the future of the industry lied on the hands of Africans.

“For the funding of the oil and gas projects across the continent, we have gone into partnership with the African Export-Import Bank to establish Africa Energy Bank with objective of financing oil and gas projects in the continent.

“For technology and expertise, the APPO secretariat has just concluded a tour of institutions of oil and gas training in some of our member countries for centres of excellence in petroleum industry.

“We want to banish the mindset that our people are too poor to buy energy and empower people to have access to energy,’’ he said.

The event also featured remarks by the Secretary-General of Gas Exporting Countries Forum, Mohamed Hamel, and Chairman, Oil Producing Trade Section, Mr Rick Kennedy, among others.

News Men reports that the summit, scheduled to hold from April 16 to April 20, has its theme as “Global Perspectives for a Sustainable Energy Future“

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Global energy demand to increase by 23% to 2045 – OPEC

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THE Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) says global primary energy demand is forecast to increase by 23 per cent in the period to 2045, which necessitates utilising all forms of energy.

The OPEC said based on its World Oil Outlook (WOO) forecast, resultantly, many of its Member Countries had invested heavily in renewables, which had received a positive endorsement from the G20 developing nations.

OPEC Secretary-General Haitham Al Ghais, made this known in Abuja on Monday at the sixth edition of the Nigeria International Energy Summit (NIES 20223) with the theme: “Global Perspectives for a Sustainable Energy Future,”.

The summit, scheduled to hold from April 16 to April 20, was declared open at the Presidential Banquet Hall by President Muhammadu Buhari through the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha.

Al Ghais listed the renewables as solar, nuclear, wind and waste-to-energy power, in addition to Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) and hydrogen projects, as well as the Circular Carbon Economy.

“At OPEC, we recognise that the scope of the climate challenge requires comprehensive solutions. There is no panacea that can solve it alone.

“The oil and gas industry can foster its resources and expertise and help unlock our emissions-free future, through its role as a powerful innovator in developing cleaner and more efficient technological solutions.

“A diverse range of mitigation measures are necessary.

“The capacities and national circumstances of developing countries must be taken into account in all actions. We should never forget that climate change and sustainable development are two sides of the same coin,’’ he said.

He said that OPEC, as an intergovernmental organisation, composed exclusively of developing countries, seven of which are African, would want all voices included in discussions on energy transitions.

He said it had been directly involved in the evolution of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), from the UN Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee in 1990, to COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh in 2022.

“We are delighted that COP28 will be hosted by our Member Country, the United Arab Emirates.

“In addition to being involved in climate negotiations, OPEC and its Member Countries are proactive in looking for a diverse range of energy sources to meet the needs of the future,’’ he said.

The Secretary-General further said that the global oil sector alone would need cumulative investment of 12.1 trillion dollars through to 2045.

However, he said in recent years, it had heard calls from some to limit or stop funding for new oil and gas projects which was disheartening, and particularly impactful on developing countries with oil and gas resources.

“This great continent, Africa, has 120 billion barrels of proven oil reserves and 18 trillion standard cubic metres of natural gas.

“For countries to properly utilise these resources for the benefit of their people, investment levels must be adequate, whilst taking actions to reduce the carbon footprint of the oil industry.

“However, movements by financial institutions to limit and stringently control how money is invested into fossil fuels under environmental, social and governance (ESG) constraints impedes the realisation of this potential.

Al Ghais, while commending President Muhammadu Buhari for being a strong supporter of OPEC, also looked forward to a continued cooperation with the incoming administration led by President Elect, Sen. Bola Tinubu

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Shell, NNPC, others honoured at NIES 2023 Summit

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Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria, SPDC, on Monday received the highest number of awards at the Dinner and Award Night hosted by the organizers of the 2023 sixth Nigeria International Energy Summit, NIES, in Abuja.

News Men reports that SPDC carted away the Upstream Company of the Year Award, Best Offshore Oil and Gas Company of the Year, Best Exhibitor at NIES 2022 as well as Best Petroleum Support Company Award.

The other companies and stakeholders that received awards for distinguished services in various categories in the oil and gas sector included Mele Kyari, Group CEO of NNPC and Osagie Okubor, who won Energy Personality Award.

Total Energy won the Best Fully Integrated Company Award, while NNPC Retail Ltd got the award for Best Downstream Company of the Year Award and NNPC Ltd. won the Energy Innovation Award.

The Life Time Energy Industry Award went to Nkechi Obi, Group Managing Director, Techno Oil, while Gas Utilization Award and Local Content Company of the Year Award was given to NLNG Ltd.

In another category, Oil Service Company of the Year Award went SLV Nigeria, while Best Independent Oil Producers Award went to First Exploration and Production, First EMP, among others.

Sunday Babatunde and Musa Saed were presented with the Industry Acknowledgment Award for their huge contributions to the sector.

The dinner, sponsored by the Nigeria Content Development Monitoring Board, NCDMB also featured dancing and laughter sessions as Nigerian music maestro, Johnny Drill, played his numerous hit songs.

This year’s Summit, themed ‘Global Perspectives for a Sustainable Energy Future’, was declared open on Monday by President Muhammadu Buhari, and it is featuring panel discussions on crucial issues affecting the energy sector in Nigeria and Africa.

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