Dangote group is set to become another source of foreign exchange for Nigeria as soon as the company’s refinery, petrochemicals and fertiliser projects come on stream.
This potential reversal of roles was disclosed by Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Mr. Godwin Emefiele, after he toured the ongoing Dangote Refinery, Petrochemicals, Fertiliser projects and Dangote deep-water jetty in Lagos over the weekend.
The CBN governor premised his comment on the huge forex earnings expected to accrue from export of petrochemical and fertiliser products from Dangote refinery and fertilizer plants by the time the fertilizer plant begins operations in May this year, and the refinery in 2020
Nigeria’s economy is heavily dependent on its oil sector for foreign exchange. With huge potential as the 12th largest oil-producing nation in the world, an estimated 37.2 billion barrels of crude oil deposits and seventh in the world in terms of gas reserves of about 187 trillion cubic feet, the country is the only member country of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that depends on imported refined petroleum products
With four refineries, giving a combined capacity of 445,000 barrels per day (bpd) , many believe the country has no business relying solely on importation for her domestic consumption.
Reports indicate that corruption has made it difficult to get these refineries working to full capacity.
With Nigeria’s first private refinery coming on board soon, the Governor of Nigeria’s central bank is optimistic that the refinery and fertiliser projects will create thousands of jobs , check importation of fuel by the Federal Government and in turn save government huge forex currently being spent on fuel import.