Local Refining: Federal Govt Pledges Support For Waltersmith Refinery In Imo State (Photos)
The Federal Government has pledged support for Waltersmith Refinery in Imo State over local refining.
Vanguardngr reports that the Federal Government has promised full support for the expansion plans of Waltersmith Refinery, as part of efforts to boost local refining of petroleum products in the country.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Heineken Lokpobiri, who made the pledge during his official visit to the refinery located at Ibigwe, Imo State, said the refinery’s role aligned with one of his key objectives of ramping up Nigeria’s refining capacity and promoting economic growth.
“The shortest way to addressing our problem of low in-country refining capacity is modular refineries and that is why I am here to see things for myself.
”I am very proud of what I have seen. I also want to encourage Waltersmith and pledge my full support towards their expansion plans, so we can solve the energy problem of our country.”
Also speaking during the visit, the Executive Secretary of National Content Development and Monitoring Board, NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote, reiterated the Board’s commitment to supporting projects that aligned with the Nigerian Content Act, fostering local capacity development, and enhancing value retention within the country.
He said “NCDMB investment in Waltersmith Modular Refinery has turned out to be one of its best investment decisions so far.”
In his remarks, chairman of Waltersmith Group, Abdulrazaq Isa, emphasized the need for collaborative efforts between the private and government entities to advance the nation’s energy sector.
“We are moving from 5,000 to 10,000 barrels of crude oil a day (bpd) but our focus is on achieving 40,000bpd capacity.
”Already, we are engaging all necessary parties, especially the national oil company, Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd, NNPC Ltd, to ensure we have access to enough feedstock that will enable us get to the 40,000bpd capacity.
”That is where we are headed and our co-investor, the NCDMB, is happy with what we are doing,” he added.
The managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Bank of Industry, BOI, Olasupo Olusi, said the bank was open and committed to supporting the expansion plans of Waltersmith refinery.
He stated: “We want to see the scaling up of refining in Nigeria. That will help in alleviating some of the economic issues at present and for us, that is a very strategic intervention in this critical sector of our economy.”