Minister of petroleum resources, Dr Rilwan Lukman has reiterated government desire to allow the organised private sector to participate in current efforts aimed at ensuring that scarcity of petroleum products becomes a thing of the past.
He told members of the Nigerian Guild of Editors last week in Abuja that although none of theb18 private companies that had been given licence to build refineries has so far commenced production, government still wants to offer more opportunities for construction of ‘greenfield’ refineries in the country.
Telling the editors about the enormity of the problem, the minister said importation has become an imperative, because even at full installed production capacity, all the nation’s refineries can not meet daily consumption requirement of 30 million litres of petrol per day.
According to him, the state of the refineries have created a huge gap between the quantity of petroleum products that is produced and the nation’s consumption requirement. The solution lies in the construction of new refineries, he stressed.
“With the refineries in place and lower products’ imports, the nation would be better off. The best idea is to build more refineries across the country through the PPP,” he said.
“For sometime now, most Nigerians have grappled with the difficulty of sourcing petrol. Talk about the long queues at the petrol stations and agony in getting the petroleum products. “I am glad that the situation is being handled and very soon it would be over,” he said.