The Bank of Industry (BoI) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Export-Import Bank of China for the provision of a $500m facility towards the establishment of modular refineries in Nigeria.
The establishment of modular refineries is part of the Federal Government’s plan to end importation of petroleum products and to discourage illegal bunkering activities in the Niger Delta region.
To date, a total of 38 operating licences have already been granted by the Federal Government to establish modular refineries in the Niger Delta.
The facility is expected to stimulate economic growth, drive investments and provide jobs for Nigerians
A statement by the Bank of Industry on Saturday said the facility would be utilised to finance the purchase of equipment and machinery from China by investors and project owners of modular refineries in Nigeria.
It said the aim was to ensure the availability of refined petroleum products within the country, monetise gas flare, reduce cost of products in the midterm and provide employment for Nigerians.
The statement, which quoted the Managing Director, BoI, Mr Olukayode Pitan, said, “I am delighted to begin the next chapter of a long-term trading relationship with China through CEXIM.
“This agreement is set to create over 100,000 jobs in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector — a decisive move that will advance the Federal Government’s Modular Refineries and Flare Gas Recovery Programme.”
It said about 10 modular refineries were at advanced stages of development in the Niger Delta, adding that the facility would ensure that more modular refineries were constructed.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government has restated its commitment to helping petty traders and artisans change their level by providing continuous loans to enable them to expand their businesses through TraderMoni, in conjunction with the BoI.
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo said the initiative was part of government’s desire to leverage on the penetration of mobile devices across the country to provide collateral-free loans of N10,000.
Speaking at the launch of the scheme at Utako Ultra-Modern Market, Abuja, Osinbajo asked the traders and artisans to avail themselves of the TraderMoni loan, which he said was meant to empower them and expand their businesses.