Dangote Refinery  Commences  Operation December

Daud Olatunji

 In a groundbreaking development set to redefine Africa’s energy landscape, the much-anticipated Dangote Refinery, with a daily capacity of 650,000 barrels, is poised to kickstart operations next month. 

The project, backed by Africa’s wealthiest individual, Aliko Dangote, is expected to revolutionize oil trading in the Atlantic Basin and alter the course of fuel exports from Europe and the United States to the African continent.

Sources with insider knowledge of the matter have disclosed that the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) is prepared to supply up to six shipments of crude oil to facilitate the crucial test runs at the refinery, marking a significant milestone for this long-awaited project.

The refinery, strategically located in the Lekki Free Trade Zone in Lagos State, holds the promise of turning Nigeria, a prominent oil giant, into a net exporter of fuels.

 This achievement is a monumental goal for a nation that has historically relied heavily on fuel imports. 

With its strategic location and immense capacity, the Dangote Refinery is set to transform the energy landscape of not only Nigeria but the entire African continent.

One source, requesting anonymity, revealed that December will witness the delivery of six cargoes, totaling 200,000 barrels of crude oil daily, as part of a year-long agreement. 

The volumes for the subsequent months will be contingent on mutual agreement and availability.

 Other sources have suggested plans for a supply of about four to five cargoes, amounting to a minimum of 130,000 barrels per day.

A spokesperson from the Dangote Group, who opted to remain unidentified, hinted at confidentiality clauses in certain aspects of the supply agreement but refrained from providing further details.

It is noteworthy that NNPCL holds a substantial 20% stake in the Dangote Refinery, cementing a strategic alliance aimed at reshaping Nigeria’s energy sector.

The commissioning process for the refinery, initiated in May of this year, has finally overcome years of delays, reaching a cost of approximately $19 billion, exceeding the initial estimate of $12-14 billion.

 Commissioning entails rigorous testing of the various units responsible for the production of petroleum products, from gasoline to diesel, ensuring their seamless response to control panels.

In a historical milestone, the facility was formally commissioned by former President Muhammadu Buhari during the twilight of his administration, signifying a turning point in Nigeria’s quest for energy self-sufficiency.

 As the Dangote Refinery gears up for operation, it holds the promise of economic transformation and greater energy independence for the nation and the African continent at large.

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