NCDMB Executive Secretary, Engr. Simbi Wabote tour to the Modular Refinery in Egbokor, Benin City.
By Ebi Perekeme
The 2,500 barrels per day modular refinery being established at Egbokor, Edo State, South South Nigeria, by Duport Midstream Company Limited in partnership with the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) will be ready for commissioning in the last quarter of this year.
The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Simbi Kesiye Wabote, said this when he visited the project site to assess the progress of work on the fabrication of the tank farms, civil works, pipeline installation and other site preparation works where he confirmed that the project had reached 80 per cent completion.
He said the modules for the two megawatts power plant and the control room were being fabricated and assembled in Lagos for delivery to the site.
The modular refinery is part of the Duport Energy Park conceived to include a 30 million standard cubic feet per day gas processing facility and a power plant.
NCDMB’s partnership with the Duport Energy Park was approved in June 2020 by the board’s Governing Council chaired by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva.
The project is being supported under NCDMB’s commercial ventures programme, which is also in sync with the agency’s vision to serve as a catalyst for the industrialisation of the Nigerian oil and gas industry and its linkage sectors.
Speaking after the site tour, the NCDMB chieftain commended the contractors for the substantial progress they had made on the project.
He hinted that the operational phase of the refinery would create employment for 100 persons and indirect and induced jobs for about 1500 persons.
He emphasised that the board’s partnership with Duport Midstream and other investors to develop critical energy facilities were conceived to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s drive to create millions of jobs for the Nigerian populace.
He assured that NCDMB was committed to create jobs for Nigerians through its direct projects and partnerships with other project promoters.
According to Wabote, “when the Federal Government enunciated the policy on the development of modular refineries, NCDMB decided to explore ways through which we can build modular refineries to refine products locally.
“We first partnered with Waltesmith Modular Refinery in Imo State and it is already operational, refining 5000 barrels of crude per day.
Azikel Modular Refinery in Bayelsa State is the second one and this Duport project is the third project and we believe that it would be commissioned in the last quarter of this year.”
Chairman of Duport Midstream Company, Dr. Akintoye Akindele, hinted that the project would be the first integrated energy park, with a scalable and environmentally friendly modular refinery, power generation and distribution plant.
The Executive Secretary and his delegation also paid a courtesy visit to Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, at the Government House in Benin.
He remarked during the visit that Section 70 of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act mandates NCDMB to assist local contractors and Nigerian companies to develop their capabilities and capacities to further the attainment of the goal of developing Nigerian Content in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.
Wabote added that the Board relied on that provision to go into partnerships with select project promoters to catalyse the realization of Federal Government’s policy pronouncements.
He mentioned that the Duport Energy Park is one of the series of the Board’s partnerships to contribute to the implementation of the Modular Refinery aspect of the Federal Government’s Refining Roadmap.
Wabote commended the Edo State Governor for a providing conducive environment for the Duport Energy Park project and underscored the peaceful disposition of the host communities that attracted the investment.
He said the project has created job opportunities at the construction phase and the employment numbers would multiply during the operations and maintenance phase.
The Executive Secretary restated that one of the key benefits for the establishment of modular refineries is the steady rebuilding of local skills in refinery operations especially amongst the young workforce.