US company, Barker Hughes plans to construct oil refinery in Nigeria

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American oil firm, Barker Hughes, has shown keen interest in investing in domestic refineries as the federal government strives to eliminate the importation of petroleum products.

Nigeria, a prominent crude oil producer, currently relies on importing all its petroleum products, placing considerable strain on its currency in the foreign exchange market.

However, at a meeting with Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, Minister for State Petroleum Resources (Oil), held on the sidelines of the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28), Mr. Lorenzo Simonelli, Chairman, President/CEO of Baker Hughes, expressed a strong interest in sustaining and expanding their investments in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry, including potential investments in refineries.

A statement from the minister’s media aide, Nneamaka Okafor, highlighted that the meeting held yesterday marked a significant step in the government’s endeavors to attract investment into the oil and gas sector.

Simonelli affirmed Baker Hughes’ dedication to contributing to the energy transformation agenda of the Renewed Hope administration, led by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

He emphasized the company’s readiness to collaborate with the Federal Government in advancing sustainable energy practices, aligning with the goals of COP28.

Simonelli said:  “Nigeria is a blessed nation with vast potentials and great opportunities in diverse sectors. As a partner with the federal government over the years, we are inspired to direct investment in the refinery domain of the oil and gas.”

”Therefore, whatever we can do to support to get started, I am willing to do that, even now.”

Responding, Senator Lokpobiri praised the longstanding partnership between Nigeria and the global giant in the energy sector.

He emphasized the company’s significant contributions over the years and expressed confidence in strengthening the collaboration through expanded investments in the nation’s oil and gas industry.

Senator Lokpobiri reassured the Baker Hughes delegation of the federal government’s dedication to fostering a conducive environment for investments in the refinery sector.

He affirmed the implementation of appropriate measures to facilitate the smooth realization of Baker Hughes’ investment plans, aligning with the overarching vision of the Renewed Hope administration.

“I am very happy that you have joined other companies in identifying the great opportunities and government’s favourable policies in our oil and gas sector and with the advent of the PIA, we now have a workable framework that guarantees conducive environment for investment,” he stated.