“It is actually a legal business.”
The Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, said it had concluded plans to go into oil bunkering business to boost its profitability in line with its transformation objective.
This was disclosed in a statement by the corporation’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Ohi Alegbe, on Thursday in Abuja.
The statement said that NNPC’s Group Managing Director, Andrew Yakubu, made this known at a capacity-building workshop for stakeholders in the oil sector, in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
Mr. Yakubu said that the new focus of the corporation followed the recent lifting of the ban on oil bunkering on the country’s waterways by the Department of Petroleum Resources.
He said that the process of registering the bunkering venture with relevant government agencies had begun and disclosed that NNPC may commence operation in that regard in October.
He said that the corporation had already developed a business model for bunkering on Nigerian waterways.
Mr. Yakubu explained that contrary to the general impression that bunkering was an illegal activity, “It is actually a legal business which involves fuelling of ships and other marine vessels on the high sea.”
He stated that the business acquired illegality appellation as a result of the long ban of the business on the Nigerian waterways.
According to him, the ban precipitated the illegal version which dominated the terrain.
On alleged scarcity of aviation fuel, he said that he was unaware of such a development, He explained that the product had long been deregulated and that NNPC did not deal in it.
Mr. Yakubu, however, promised to intervene by getting across to stakeholders concerned with the product “to find out the true state of affairs with the supply of the product”.