Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, has disclosed that the Port Harcourt refinery is likely to resume operations by the first quarter of 2023.
Recall that the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited commenced the rehabilitation of the refinery, after the Federal Executive Council, approved $1.5 billion for the rehabilitation exercise in 2021.
The minister, who was on a facility tour in Eleme, Rivers State, said the refinery, at the start of operations, would refine 60,000 barrels of crude per stream day (bpsd).
According to him, “This project kicked off second quarter last year, and where they are now is quite impressive. It is on schedule.
“The commitment is to deliver 60,000 barrels per day from this refinery by the first quarter of next year, and, of course, we are quite happy.”
Continuing, he assured that the Federal Government is working to end illegal oil bunkering and artisanal refining going on in the Niger Delta.
According to him, “What is going on in Port Harcourt and some of these areas causing problem is a criminal activity, and we cannot legalise that criminal activity.
“We must stop that activity by law enforcement and that has started. The programme of starting a modular refinery had always been on.
“Any law abiding Nigerian who wants to invest in this area can access funding and the licenses from the federal government.”