DPR Shops For Investors As Atiku Says Refineries Have Not Prospered Under Govt Ownership

The Department of Petroleum Resources has called for private sector investment in developing modular refineries across the country.

The Director, DPR, Sarki Auwalu, made this call while speaking to journalists in Ahoada, Rivers State.

He stated that as a way of controlling the menace of illegal refineries, the Department is willing to license more modular refineries to come on stream.

He said, “DPR is a business enabler and opportunity provider. We create the business of oil and gas and ensure that it is sustained.

“I am calling on Nigerians to come invest in this sector, bring more.

“The sector has been de-risked and if you’re afraid that you can’t refine, don’t go and do illegal refinery. Come and do legal refining and we are ready to give you licence.”

Recall that Waltersmith Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited launched a 5,000bpd modular refinery in Imo state.

The DPR Boss noted that of the 44 refinery licences given to private investors in past years, only a few projects are underway.

According to the DPR, 38 proposed modular refineries with capacity ranging from 5,000 barrels per day to 30,000bpd, and six conventional plants with a total capacity of 1.35 million bpd.
Meanwhile, a former Vice President of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar has said the privatisation as well as deregulation of the oil and gas sector would lead to greater service delivery and efficiency.

The former VP, who stated this via his Twitter handle, said that the refineries and other assets have not always prospered under public management.

He said, “As chairman of the National Council on Privatisation, I advanced these policies which saw our economy achieve six percent GDP growth and created jobs for the masses of our people, and amass the national wealth that enabled us exit the debt trap, and secure our financial independence.

“For decades, I have championed the privatisation of our economy and full deregulation of our oil and gas sector, amongst other sectors, for greater service delivery and efficiency.

“Even though my ideas were scorned by the All Progressives Congress led Federal Government over the years.”

He further urged that the privatisation process should be as transparent as possible, adding that this is the only way to ensure that Nigeria reaps the greatest economic benefits from this policy.

“It is always better late than never. And I commend the Federal Government for coming on board. I am nevertheless most fulfilled that an administration that once failed to see the wisdom in these sound economic policies, is now facing reality and has now embraced reason.”