By Edith Ike-Eboh
Dr Maikanti Baru, Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Sunday said efforts are ongoing to explore the possibilities of piping crude oil from Niger Republic to be refined in Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited (KRPC).
Baru disclosed this during a townhall meeting with management and staff of KRPC in Kaduna.
He said that President Muhammadu Buhari was personally committed to the project.
He said it was important to explore alternative crude supply to KRPC, which had been affected by vandalism of pipelines and obsolescence.
According to him, the initiative will reduce downtime of the plant and ensure optimal utilisation.
“Due to challenges with the aged refinery and crude oil pipelines that had been breached severally, the operations of the refinery has been epileptic.
“ This, we are determined to resolve through various intervention methods including evaluation of alternative crude oil supply from Niger Republic through building of a pipelines of over 1, 000 kilometers from Agadem to Kaduna.
“That efforts are being championed by Mr President himself, “he said
Baru in statement signed by Mr Ndu Ughamadu, Group Managing Director, Group Public Affairs Division of the corporation in Abuja noted that corporation had already started engagements with the Nigerien Minister of Petroleum and the Chinese that are operating the field at Agadem.
He promised to drive the energy supply project to power industries in Kaduna by ensuring the completion of the Ajaokuta-Abuja-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) gas pipeline.
Earlier, the Managing Director of KRPC, Malam Idi Mukhtar, said the Fluid Cracking Catalytic Unit (FCCU) of the plant was restreamed in June.
“The Kerosene Hydro treating Unit (KHU) rehabilitation is ongoing with the equipment overhaul and integrity checks.
“ When operational, the margin of value addition on kerosene and Aviation Turbine Kerosene (ATK) will provide millions of naira in revenue, even at a throughput of 60 per cent,” Mukhtar assured.
It would be recalled that the refinery was designed to process both imported paraffinic and Nigerian crude oils into fuels and lubes products and was constructed by Chiyoda Chemical Engineering and Construction Company (now Chiyoda Corporation) of Japan.
In December 1986, the design capacity of the fuels plants of the Refinery was successfully debottlenecked from 50,000 BPSD to 60,000 BPSD, bringing the total refinery installed capacity to 110,000 BPSD.