The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) disclosed on Tuesday that 28 investors, including BUA Refinery & Petrochemicals Limited, have active refining licences.
In a new list published on its website, said 28 licenses were active while 29 were inactive.
Investors with active Licence to Establish are BUA Refinery & Petrochemicals, Ogini Refinery Limited, Excel Exploration & Production, Lowrie Refinery Limited, NPDC/ND WESTERN OML 34 JV, Ogini Refinery, Eghudu Refinery and Kingdom Global Trading Petroleum & Gas Nig.
The 20 refineries with active Approval to Construct/Relocate include Dangote Oil Refinery Company, OPAC Refineries, Waltersmith Refining & Petrochemical Company, Niger Delta Petroleum Resources, Edo Petrochemical Refinery, Etopo Energy Plc, Resource Petroleum & Petrochemicals International Incorporated, Duport Midstream and Conodit Refinery Nigeria.
Others are Lowrie Refinery, Excel Refinery, Gasoline Associates International, Frao Oil Nigeria, Alexis Refinery, Allegiance Energy and Power, Atlantic International Refineries and Petrochemical, Amakpe International Refinery Inc, Gazingstock Petroleum Company, Azikel Petroleum, and Clairgold Oil & Gas Engineering.
Former Minister of Interior, Capt. Emmanuel Iheanacho, who is the chairman of Eko Petrochem and Refining Company has said investors that have been granted licences to build refineries in the country need sufficient time to do so. He emphasized that it was wrong to assume that a refinery could be built in two years in the country.
In 2017, Eko Petrochem and Refining announced the signing of a grant of $797,343 by the United States Trade and Development Agency for the project.
Iheanacho said, “What is in it if you give somebody a licence and you then put a time frame? What you should do is to give a licence, if the investor succeeds, we clap. If not, we say, “Oh, next time.” But to say that we have given you a licence, and then later say, “We have taken it back.” What are you taking it back for? There is no need to cancel anybody’s licence.”
The ex-minister said his company had been on its refinery project for four years, adding, “At no time have we stopped. We have continued; we have done the front-end engineering. We have done detailed engineering.
The DPR said on Tuesday that companies whose refinery project licences had become inactive could reapply for revalidation.
Iheanacho therefore stated that the company would revalidate its licence. “We have been discussing it. That is a non-issue. So, we are doing everything necessary,” he added.
The DPR, in a statement by its Head of Public Affairs, Mr Paul Osu, clarified that DPR did not revoke any refinery licence. It stated that refinery licence, like our other regulatory instruments, have validity periods for investors to attain certain milestones.
The agency said it would continue to provide support to investors in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria using its regulatory instruments of licences, permits and approvals to stimulate the economy and align with government’s job creation initiatives.