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'FG has strategies capable of ending oil crisis in few months'

Ibe Kachikwu, Minister for Petroleum Resources during a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja stated that the FG was working hard to solve the fuel crisis.

Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu

Present at the meeting were the state house correspondents after leading officials of Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas, NUPENG and and Petroleum and Natural Gas  Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN.

Kachikwu said that NNPC has increased from 50% of importing crude products to 100% importing.

“One of the trainings I did not receive is that of a magician but I am working very hard to ensure some of these issues go away. Let’s be honest, for the five, six months, we have been here, NNPC has moved from a 50 percent importer of products to basically a 100 percent importer. And the 445,000 barrels that were allocated was to cover between 50 and 55 percent importation.

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“So, it is quite frankly sheer magic that we even have some amount of products at the stations. We are looking to see how to get foreign exchange input. The President and I discussed extensively on how to get more crude directed at importation.

He added that the Federal government have come up with workable strategies to reduce the petrol scarcity, which will spread through the next couple of months.

“His Excellency will rather have less crude but have individuals in the society suffer less with inconveniences than have more crude and have them continue to suffer.

“So, we are going to put a new model to enable us increase the pace and actually get majors as part of the crew of those to bring in more products, so that the NNPC will sort of go back on the capacity of what it used to do and the majors will take over the balance of importation.

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“I think if we do that, although I don’t want to put a time frame, but I will expect that over the next two months. Of course, you are aware the SAP programme begins in April. So, over the next two months, we should see quite frankly a complete elimination of this.

Kachikwu assured that lasting results to the current feul scarcity and queues will stop.

“Our strategy is that whatever is produced in the refineries will not go for sale. We are going to keep them in strategic reserve because the key problem here is that there is no reserve. Any time there is gap in supply, it goes off.

“So we are going to dedicate the next couple of months to moving all the products that we produce to strategic reserve so that we can pile up reserves in the nation and that will push up the reserves in the nation.

‘’Believe me, this is giving me and my team sleepless nights and we are working on it and we are committed to making this go away. Nigerians should please bear with us.”

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In a related news, Ibe KachikwuMinister of Petroleum Resources during the closing ceremony of the sixth African Petroleum Congress and Exhibition in Abuja on Thursday, March 18, 2016 stated that Nigerian firms would survive the global hike in crude oil prices.

The Minister said though business in this time of adversity will not be easy, but companies who embrace new technologies and business strategies are likely to survive.

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