Lokpobiri: Nigeria Eyes 2 Million Barrels Daily Oil Output by 2023

by Adenike Adeodun

Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Heineken Lokpobiri revealed ambitious plans to elevate Nigeria’s crude oil production to at least two million barrels daily by the end of 2023. During a press briefing at the State House Conference Centre, he emphasized the government’s efforts to revive the nation’s underperforming refineries.

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) is spearheading the rehabilitation of three key refineries, a critical move to curb fuel scarcity and bolster natural gas reliance. Despite an investment exceeding $25 billion in the past decade for refinery repairs, operational capacity lingered below 30 percent, sparking a demand for a forensic audit by the 9th National Assembly.

According to a report by the Daily Post, Lokpobiri held NNPCL accountable for meeting rehabilitation timelines, specifically for the Warri and Port Harcourt refineries, with completion phases extending into the following year. The minister also announced ongoing Senate investigations into refinery maintenance expenditures and the quest for profitable refinery commercialization.

Highlighting unscheduled refinery visits, Lokpobiri underscored his proactive approach to ensuring project progress. He linked the success of domestic refining capacity to the anticipated Dangote refinery and various licensed modular refineries, stressing the urgency for increased crude production to supply these facilities.

Simplifying licensing processes, Lokpobiri has streamlined approvals and adopted a strict use-it-or-lose-it policy for licenses, aiming to quicken the pace of industry growth and job creation.

The minister closed by stressing the interconnectedness of increased crude production with the resolution of the fuel crisis and stated that addressing security and investment challenges is pivotal for achieving the ministry’s goal of nearing two million barrels daily by year’s end.

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