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Dangote refinery finally receives its first shipment of crude after years of delay

Dangote's 650,000 b/d refinery has received its initial crude feedstock in the country, as reported by market sources and tanker tracking data, according to SP Global.

Aliko Dangote's refinery project has the capacity to produce 650,000 barrels per day. [Nairametrics]
  • The OTIS tanker loaded a 950,000-barrel cargo of Nigeria's Agbami crude to Lekki, the nearest land port to Dangote's offshore crude receiving terminal.
  • The privately owned refinery was officially completed in May but did not make any oil products due to a lack of domestic crude feedstock.
  • NNPC has chartered some other tankers to transport further crude shipments from Nigerian offshore fields to the refinery later this month.

This development signals the commencement of fuel production at the long-awaited $19 billion facility after enduring years of delays.

The OTIS tanker loaded a 950,000-barrel cargo of Nigeria's Agbami crude on Dec. 6 to Lekki, the nearest land port to Dangote's offshore crude receiving terminal.

The Suezmax tanker, chartered by state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Company, is the first of Dangote's initial crude supplies as the giant new plant starts to ramp up operations, a West African oil trader said.

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The long-awaited Dangote refinery, heralded as a game-changer for Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa, was officially completed in May. However, it missed its production commencement target in August, facing several delays over the years primarily attributed to a shortage of domestic crude feedstock.

Operated by Chevron, Agbami is one of Nigeria's largest deepwater developments pumping about 100,000 b/d in the central Niger Delta.

Agbami produces light sweet crude with a gravity of 47.9 API and a sulfur content of 0.04%, according to Platts' Periodic Table of Oil. The crude is known in the market for yielding a large proportion of naphtha and kerosene.

NNPC has chartered some other tankers to transport further crude shipments from Nigerian offshore fields to the refinery later this month, the oil trader said.

Aliko Dangote, the President of the Dangote Group, confirmed that it marks a significant milestone, and the primary focus is to ensure the refinery reaches its full capacity.

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“We are delighted to have reached this significant milestone. This is an important achievement for our country as it demonstrates our ability to develop and deliver large capital projects,"

"Our focus over the coming months is to ramp up the refinery to its full capacity. I look forward to the next significant milestone when we deliver the first batch of products to the Nigerian market,” he stated.

Dangote earlier confirmed that the refinery will indeed begin operations in December 2023. According to him, the long-awaited refinery is starting with 350,000 barrels a day.

Last month, he announced intentions to publicly list his Dangote Petroleum Refinery on the Nigerian Exchange Limited.

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