James Emejo in Abuja

The Federal Government through the Bank of Industry (BoI) has secured a $500 million facility from the Export Import Bank of China (CEXIM) to establish modular refineries and Flare Gas Recovery Programme in the country.

The establishment of modular refineries is part of federal government’s plan to end importation of petroleum products and to discourage illegal oil bunkering activities in the Niger Delta region.

The landmark development reinforces the present administration’s drive to stimulate economic growth, drive investments and provide jobs for Nigerians.

Speaking at the signing ceremony in Beijing, China, Chief Executive of BoI, Mr. Olukayode Pitan, reiterated the job creation potential of this partnership.

He said: “I am delighted to begin the next chapter of a long-term trading relationship with China through CEXIM.

“This agreement is set to create over 100,000 jobs in Nigeria’s Oil & Gas sector—a decisive move that will advance the Federal Government’s Modular Refineries and Flare Gas Recovery Programme.”

Essentially, the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between BOI and CEXIM stipulated that the loan facility will be utilised to finance the purchase of equipment and machinery from China by investors and project owners of modular refineries in the country.

The purpose is to ensure availability of refined petroleum products within the country, monetise gas flare, reduce cost of products in the mid-term and provide employment for Nigerians.

The facility can be accessed via letters of credit issued for the delivery of specified modular refineries and gas processing equipment to qualified Nigerian companies establishing petrochemical facilities under the modular refineries and gas flare recovery programme.

To date, a total of 38 operating licenses had already been granted by the Federal Government to establish modular refineries in the Niger Delta, according to a statement issued by the development finance institution Saturday.