The federal government has announced plan to revoke licenses given to individuals and corporate organisations for private refineries but were yet to be utilised.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, said this at a World Press Conference on the sidelines of ongoing annual Offshore Technology Conference in Houston, U.S.
Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo had granted licenses to some private concerns to build refineries but only Alhaji Aliko Dangote, put it to use.
Dangote Refinery, expected to produce 1.3 million metric tonnes per annum for petrochemical plant in Lagos, would commence operation in the last quarter of 2018.
“I have spoken with DPR on the matter. Those who have not been able to move forward will have their licenses withdrawn,” Kachikwu disclosed.
He said that the aim of giving licenses was to reduce the huge capital flight to fuel importation, meet local demand and look at possible exports.
The minister explained that the review of the system was necessary as the nation’s existing refineries, which had a combined capacity of 446,000 barrels per day, were grossly inadequate to meet national daily demand.
He said that his outlook for the year for the sector was to “have a robust relation with investors to increase production of crude to 2.5 million bpd and then to 3 million bpd.”