The Federal Government is to integrate artisanal and modular refinery operators into mainstream oil and gas sector to promote the inclusion of more local content in the industry.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo gave the indication virtually at the ongoing National Summit on the Integration of Artisanal and Modular Refinery Operations in Abuja.
According to the Vice President, the initiative will also curtail illegal oil activities in the Niger Delta region.
“we are confident that the integration of artisanal and modular refinery operations into the oil and gas sector will not only promote the inclusion of more local content in the industry.
“It will advance the use of home-grown technology in the refining of petroleum products and also curtail illegal oil activities in the Niger Delta region.”
The Minister of State, Finance, Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba noted that the inclusion of modular refineries in the downstream sector would create jobs, reduce capital flights and boost the economy.
‘’This Summit presents another opportunity to advance a paradigm shift from rhetorics to action based on current realities.
“The reality is that artisanal refining operations in the Niger Delta if properly integrated into the Nigerian oil and gas sector will create a positive impact in the Nigerian economy and reduce crimes and criminalities in the region,’’ Agba said.
Similarly, the Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Sen. Ita Enang said the conference was aimed at steering the Nation on course of self-sufficiency in the refining of petroleum products.
He noted that the outcome of the summit would help to crash the prices of petroleum products in the country.
“This assemblage of brains, practitioners, academics and indeed the artisanal practitioners is intended as a forum for engagement as if we were negotiating at cease fire in a war against the National economy.
“And the National Assembly is here to gather inputs as some of the submissions here may require Legislative sanction in the Petroleum Industry Bill under consideration.
He was, therefore, hopeful that the outcome of the conference would boost local refining capacity and the import – export element as well as ports and Agencies statutory charges in the Petroleum products pricing.