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BUA’s 200,000bpd Refinery Project Will Meet FG’s Economic Diversification Agenda-Rabiu

Founder and executive chairman, BUA Group, Abdul Samad Rabiu has said the proposed 200,000 barrels per day BUA refining and petrochemical plant in Akwa Ibom will meet the federal government’s economic diversification agenda in the long run.

Rabiu disclosed this at a forum in Lagos recently. According to him, as new fuel standards continue to evolve in line with the climate crisis, a project like BUA refinery will have a monumental positive impact on the nation’s economy.

He disclosed that Nigeria will be able to add value and save money if the nation can produce locally. ‘‘We will be saving money not only on the refining aspect of it but also on the trade. We currently spend a lot of money to transport crude and also to bring back the finished product. So, if you are saving the cost of just the trade aspect that will be saving a lot. “Nigeria consumes over 50 million liters of fuel daily and over 90 of that is imported with about 35 percent of the country’s scarce foreign currency spent on imported products.

This, coupled with low crude prices due to low demand arising from the coronavirus pandemic offers us huge opportunity to invest in projects that would help us conserve more funds, leveraging the low cost technology being deployed by Axens of France, offering us far lower cost than what it should be,” he said.

He said the proposed plant in Akwa Ibom is on course towards full commercial operation in 2024, barring any unforeseen developments in the local and international economy. ‘‘We expect to break ground by latest May, 2021 and once that is done, we expect that the project will be concluded in 3 years,’’ he said.

Highlighting the economic benefits of the refinery, Rabiu said the refinery’s complete marine infrastructure and nearness to its feedstock will enable it to save more on haulage, as it targets local, regional and other land -locked markets in Africa, fuelled by its unique location and opportunities emerging from the AfCFTA.

In September, 2020, a contract for the construction of the refinery was signed in France between Abdul Rabiu and Jean Sentenac, CEO of Axens, in a ceremony presided over by Franck Riester, France’s minister delegate for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness.

When fully operational, the refinery is expected to produce high-quality petrol, diesel, as well as jet fuel that meets international standards for the Nigerian and international market, reducing Nigeria’s dependence on imported fuels and petrochemicals. Rabiu also stated that the refinery will produce propylene, an essential component for the petrochemical industry which is used in the production of polypropylene-based plastics and packaging.

SOURCE: Leadership

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