Dangote refinery, fertilizer plant will ensure energy, food security – Minister

By Joy Abalaka://

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said
the coming on stream of the Dangote Petroleum Refinery and
Petrochemicals as well as the Dangote Fertilizer Plant will help to
ensure energy and food security in the country.

The Minister made the remarks in Lagos on Sunday while touring the
sprawling complexes of the refinery and the fertilizer plant in

“We must not fail to appreciate the fact that it’s not just that we
will be self-sufficient in terms of food security and energy security,
but the quality of our refined products and fertilizer will be
world-class,’’ he said.

Alhaji Mohammed, who was accompanied by 25 journalists, said while the
refinery will ensure the availability of the highest quality Euro V
Grade petroleum products, the fertilizer plant is producing granulated
urea, which is of the highest quality and which does not become sticky
and cause loss of value to the farmers.

He said the 650,000 barrels per day Dangote Refinery, which is
expected to be commissioned this year, will be a game changer in terms
of employment generation, contribution to the GDP and conservation of
foreign exchange.

“Gentlemen, based on what we have heard here today with regards to the
650,000 barrels per day Dangote Refinery, it would be a game changer
once it comes on stream in terms of employment generation. The
refinery as of today employs 35,000 people everyday.

“There will be huge value addition that will contribute to the
increase in GDP, conservation of foreign exchange as there will be no
more importation of petroleum products, generation of foreign exchange
through export of finished product, availability of petroleum products
thus ending petrol queues, and attraction of foreign capital
investments,” the Minister said.

He said the Dangote Fertilizer Plant, which was commissioned by
President Muhammadu Buhari last month, has made Nigeria the leading
producer of urea in Africa.

“With the coming on stream of the Dangote Fertilizer Plant, Nigeria is
now self-sufficient in the production of urea. In fact, Nigeria is now
the leading producer of urea in Africa. The Dangote Fertilizer plant
is already exporting to the US, India, Brazil, Mexico and Argentina.
We were fortunate to witness a ship being loaded with urea for export
to Argentina during our visit today,” Alhaji Mohammed said..

He said currently the fertilizer plant provides 1,500 direct jobs and
15,000 indirect jobs.

The Minister, who commended the President of Dangote Group, Alhaji
Aliko Dangote, for boosting investor confidence in Nigeria, said the
Federal Government will continue to create the enabling environment
for businesses to thrive.

“Under this Administration, the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council. PEBEC has implemented over 150 reforms, moving
Nigeria up 39 places on the World Bank Doing Business index since
2016. Mr. President also signed the Companies and Allied Matters Act,
2020 (CAMA 2020) – Nigeria’s most significant business legislation in
three decades.

“The result of this favourable business environment is the birth of
new businesses such as the $2.5 billion Dangote Fertilizer Plant that
will produce 3 million metric tonnes of urea every year; the 650,000
barrels per day oil refinery due to open later this year; Lekki Deep
Sea Port, one of the most modern sea ports in West Africa; BUA’s 3
million metric tonnes cement plant; the 5,000 barrels per day Modular
Refinery in Ibigwe, Imo State, and three more modular
refineries to be commissioned before May 2023 in Edo and Bayelsa
states, just to mention a few,” he said.

The Executive Director, Strategy Capital Projects and Portfolio
Development, Dangote Group, Mr. Devakumar Edwin, who conducted the
Minister round the two complexes, said 75% hydraulic testing of the
refinery as well as 70% of electrical cable fitting have been
completed preparatory to the completion of the refinery in the fourth
quarter of this year.

He said the refinery, which boasts of 4.742 billion litres storage
capacity, will serve as a strategic reserve for the country.

Mr. Edwin said 75% of the products of the refinery (petrol, kerosene, aviation fuel and diesel) will be dispatched through the sea, by which
products could be transported to Calabar, Warri, Lagos and Port

The refinery is being built at a cost of $19 billion while the fertilizer plant costs $2.5 Billion.

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