Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company, one of the country’s crude oil refineries that is run by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), is one of the highest tax payers to the government of Kaduna State, Mr. Nasir el-Rufai, the state governor has said.
According to el-Rufai, the refinery which capacity utilisation remained at zero for most parts of the months in 2018, and was not refining crude oil despite receiving the commodity from its parent body, the NNPC, pays the state its taxes regularly.
The governor in a statement from the NNPC yesterday in Abuja disclosed this to the corporation’s Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, during a courtesy call on him, he however did not disclose the type of tax the unprofitable refinery pays to the state.
The NNPC’s monthly operations and financial report for December 2018, indicated that besides a profit of N2.957.33 billion recorded by the Kaduna Refinery in April 2018, all other months, it made losses. Notwithstanding, el-Rufai, said it paid its taxes promptly.
He was also quoted to have stated in the statement signed by NNPC’s Group General Manager Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, that the state would support the NNPC to build its Abuja-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) gas pipeline project.
The governor described the AKK gas line project as a very important one to Kaduna, noting that the people of Kaduna were happy it would support the state’s power demands.
“Already, we have gone ahead by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with OCIP of Morocco for the development of a fertiliser plant in Kaduna State.
“As soon as the gas is here from the AKK Pipeline project, it will open up many possibilities. Therefore we are ready to support you in whatever way we can,” said el-Rufai.
He stated that the state would welcome the emergence of more independent power plants (IPPs) and was ready to provide land to achieve that, just as he called on the NNPC to build more fuel retail outlets within Kaduna.
Baru, in response told the governor that NNPC was open to partnership with the state and other stakeholders to accomplish the AKK gas line project.
He said: “We are very much pleased with the feedback from Governor el-Rufai. We are open to collaborations that will ensure the fast delivery of the AKK Project.”
Aside the AKK project, Baru, said the NNPC was keen on executing other projects that would trigger industrialisation and create jobs in Nigeria.
Meanwhile, the corporation also said it would support ongoing initiative by the federal government to diversify the country’s economy through agriculture by providing the fulcrum for the attainment of a mutually beneficial relationship between agriculture and industries.
Baru, said at the 40th Kaduna International Trade Fair in Kaduna, that the NNPC would continue to provide the enablers for the actualisation of Nigeria massive agricultural potentials in line with the aspirations of President Muhammadu Buhari for the sector.
He said on completion, the AKK would deliver gas to Abuja, Kaduna and Kano power plants to power factories in the northern parts of the country and the national grid.
He added that in order to bridge the medium term domestic gas supply deficit by 2020, seven Critical Gas Development Projects (7CGDPs) had also been identified, saying that the desired outcome of this initiative would boost domestic gas supply from about 1.5 billion standard cubic feet per day (bscf/d) to 5bscf/d with a corresponding 500 per cent increase in power generation to buoy capacity utilisation of industries.