The Managing Director, Bank of Industry (BoI), Olukayode Pitan, on Tuesday described the $500 million financing facility secured from China Export Import Bank (CEXIM) as crucial to Federal Government’s current efforts to reposition the nation’s economy on the path of sustainable growth.
The banker was quoted by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) as saying that the facility represented a major progress in the nation’s efforts to secure low-interest funds for the development of critical sectors of the economy and fast-tracking its recovery.
He clarified: “The establishment of modular refineries is part of FG’s plan to end importation of petroleum products and to discourage illegal oil bunkering activities in the Niger Delta region.
“To date, a total of 38 operating licences have already been granted by the Federal Government to establish modular refineries in the Niger Delta,’’ Pitan added.
On how the facility would be utilized, the BoI’s chief maintained that it would be utilised to finance the purchase of equipment and machinery from China by investors and project owners of modular refineries in the country.
According to him, part of the MoU between BoI and CEXIM is to ensure availability of refined petroleum products within the country, monetise gas flare, reduce cost of products in the mid-term and create jobs for unemployed Nigerians
Pitan disclosed that currently, 10 modular refineries were at advanced stages of development in the Niger Delta, noting that with the facility secured, government will ensure that the existing projects are completed and more constructed.
He explained further that for any operator in the oil and gas sector to access the fund, this could be done through “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.’’
It would be recalled that the $500 million loan was specifically tied modular refineries projects and flare gas recovery programme in the country.