Finish your refinery before 2019 - Nigerian govt begs Dangote

The Federal Government has pleaded with Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote to fulfill its promise to end fuel importation by December 2019 by completing its oil refinery.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Ibe Kachikwu, who visited the Dangote oil Refinery site at Lekki free trade Zone, in Lagos said government was ready to play its part to assist in completing the project before the scheduled date.

Kachikwu and his team were received at the project site by the President/Chief Executive of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote. 

The minister said the present government had always believed that the private sector holds the ace in industrialization efforts and noted that the belief has been reinforced by what the Dangote Group is doing.

Dr. Kachikwu further promised the Federal Government's support through the formulation and implementation of policies like the recently approved Nigerian Petroleum Policy that will liberalise the Petroleum market.

He said: “It is good to say that private sector is the answer to Nigeria’s problems with a project as big as this. The challenge I will give you today is that of time, I see your time for completion is 2019 December but I am sure you will understand my greed, if I tell you that the refinery component of this project should come earlier than the set date.

“I have made very firm commitment to Nigerians that I must stop the importation of petroleum products by 2019 and I am going to keep to it. It is absolutely important that we do this early and given the feat that we have achieved in terms of speed of construction and I urge you to do all within you to achieve its completion before the due date.”

“I am sure His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, will be absolutely enthused if he were to find himself, not only crystalizing the policy position we have taken so far but also coming here himself to open a facility as big as this before the end of his first term. 

‘’Whatever configurations your engineers have come up with, I urge that they go back to the drawing board and get me my refined products before your said date.”

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