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FG urged to create 70% licence subsidy for modular refineries

Some stakeholders in the oil and gas sector have stressed the need to scale up the activities of the modular/artisanal refineries in the Niger Delta…

Some stakeholders in the oil and gas sector have stressed the need to scale up the activities of the modular/artisanal refineries in the Niger Delta for more economic benefits to the country.

They urged the federal government to consider a 70% subsidy for license fees on modular refineries to formalise the several illegal refineries in the region.

These were part of the resolutions reached at the end of an engagement on the integration of modular/artisanal refinery operations convened by the Office of the Presidency through the Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Ita Enang in Abuja on Tuesday.

There is a need for formalization of the modular/artisanal refinery operators in Nigeria; and subsidization of modular/artisanal refinery licenses by 70% in order to allow artisanal operators to acquire these licenses,” the communique issued after the meeting said.

Enang said the meeting also focused on the review of the causes of losses of revenue from oil due to irregular activities in the creeks and along oil pipelines and the effect it has on the nation’s economy.

He said, “Domestic refining, which we call artisanal refining, is part of the internal sources of solving these problems, but these refined products are going into our generators, going into our systems, and we still call it illegal refining.

“But we are driving our cars with it and we still call it illegal refining, people are feeding from it and we still call it illegal artisanal refining.

“It is time we met and regularise it for the purpose of saving the economy.”

The Vice-Chancellor, Federal University of Petroleum Resources Effurun, Prof. Akpofure Rim-Ruke, said the youths are using the local process of producing local gin to produce the fuel which is the local technology that works.

“Federal University of Petroleum Resources has tested the product and it is actually in line in terms of specificity with others that are imported into this country, so the technology is working,” he noted.

The Executive Secretary, Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Dr Orji Ogbonnaya Orji, said the project is a passionate one not only for the oil sector but for the entire nation for a way out of the fuel crisis and loss of the nation’s revenue.

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