Nigeria plans to invest up to $500 million in the country’s oil refineries in order to keep them in a fine shape.
This is according to Dr Emmanuel Ife Kachikwu, Nigerian Petroleum Minister.
In addition, one of Africa’s top oil producer plans to end its need for imported petroleum products within 18 months.
“Quite frankly if you are going to be in this business downstream you’ve got to start wondering about where you are going to get your products from which means you’ve got to invest in the refineries or you’ve got to invest in reserves,” says Kachikwu.
Africa’s largest economy produces about 2 million barrels of crude daily.
Nigeria’s four oil refineries have never reached full production due to sabotage and poor maintenance.
This has forced the country to rely on pricey imports for the bulk of its energy needs.
The announcement comes when Nigeria plans to restructure its state petroleum company.
Currently crude exports account for about 95% of Nigeria’s foreign earnings.