Aliko Dangote, president of the notable Dangote Group, has assured Nigerians that when his refinery is ready, the country would no longer need to import petroleum products.
Speaking at the site of his refinery in Lekki, Dangote said his refinery would put an end to fertiliser importation in Nigeria, transforming the country into a net exporter of refined crude and fertilizer.
Today, Nigeria imports 100 percent of its fertilizer, but when we finish, Nigeria will be the largest exporter of Urea and Ammonia in Africa.
The refinery is the largest single line in Africa and it will meet our total domestic requirement and save foreign exchange. Thirty-eight per cent of CBN’s foreign exchange is spent on importation of petroleum products. But we can serve the whole West African market.
Dangote said he had been working with the government and the central bank of Nigeria (CBN) in diversifying the economy.
We are going to serve the whole domestic market in the next 10 years and also export. We have actually been doing this for a very long time to diversify the economy.
The government will lay down the policies. The CBN will assist in terms of long-term funding through the banks and even directly now because they have actually helped us quite a lot. That is what we are now trying to do.
The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), in its world oil outlook for 2015 said Dangote is responsible for nearly 50 percent of refinery projects in Africa for the next five years. The refinery which is expected to cost N2.8 trillion will refine about 650,000 barrels of crude oil per day.