Africa Oil & Gas: Nigeria Oil Minister Says Oil Refinery Revival Pushed Back

(Bloomberg) — The revival of Nigeria’s state-owned refineries will happen a year later than expected after financing talks dragged on, according to the nation’s oil minister.

Nigerian National Petroleum Corp.’s refineries, which have long operated at a fraction of their capacity after years of under-investment, began looking for private partners last year to help improve output. Until those facilities can be fixed, or new ones constructed, Nigeria will be heavily dependent on imported fuels.

“It’s not likely to happen by the end of 2019 because the financing talks for the joint ventures took longer than expected,” Nigeria’s Petroleum Minister Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu said in an interview in Cape Town. Funding is expected to be secured December, with two years required to bring the plants closer to their full combined capacity of 445,000 barrels a day, he said.

Kachikwu has offered to quit if the nation fails to meet its fuel needs locally by next year. When asked for his preferred timetable for boosting production, he replied: “Yesterday.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Paul Burkhardt in Johannesburg at pburkhardt@bloomberg.net. To contact the editors responsible for this story: James Herron at jherron9@bloomberg.net Alaric Nightingale.

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