James Emejo in Abuja

The Federal Government has secured a $500 million loan facility from the Export Import Bank of China (CEXIM), through the Bank of Industry (BoI), to establish modular refineries and implement the Flare Gas Recovery Programme. The establishment of modular refineries is part of the federal government’s strategy for ending importation of petroleum products and discouraging illegal oil bunkering, especially in the Niger Delta.

The government said the credit arrangement reinforced its determination to stimulate economic growth, drive investment, and provide jobs for Nigerians.

Speaking at the signing ceremony in Beijing, Chief Executive of BoI, Mr. Olukayode Pitan, said highlighted the job creation potentials of the partnership.

Pitan 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 and gas sector—a decisive move that will advance the Federal Government’s Modular Refineries and Flare Gas Recovery Programme.”

Essentially, the Memora-ndum 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 federal said the purpose of the loan was 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 have been granted by the federal government for the establishment of modular refineries in the Niger Delta, according to a statement issued yesterday by the development finance institution.