Dangote Group expands refinery storage capacity to 5.3 Billion liters

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Alhaji Aliko Dangote, President of the Dangote Group, announced plans to expand the storage capacity of the Dangote Petrochemical Refinery by an additional 600 million liters, which will increase its total capacity to 5.3 billion liters.

Currently, the refinery can store 4.78 billion liters of refined petroleum products. This expansion was revealed during the Afreximbank Annual Meetings and AfriCaribbean Trade & Investment Forum in Nassau, The Bahamas.

Dangote highlighted that the international oil companies (IOCs) refused to sell crude oil to his refinery, allegedly to prevent his success. Despite these challenges, he is optimistic about overcoming these obstacles, noting the critical need for his refinery in sub-Saharan Africa. He shared that his refinery would serve as a strategic reserve for Nigeria, addressing the country’s lack of strategic reserves for petrol, which he considers dangerous.

Regarding the pump price of petrol, which is around N700 per liter, Dangote did not confirm a potential price drop. However, he noted a significant price reduction in diesel from N1,700 to N1,200 per liter when his refinery began producing diesel. He explained that the refinery’s operations helped stabilize and reduce diesel prices, which benefited the economy.

Dangote also emphasized the issue of Nigeria importing dirty fuels, which have been linked to increased cancer cases. He called for stricter enforcement of regulations to stop the importation of such fuels. He assured that once his refinery is fully operational, Nigeria would cease to import refined fuel, and he also plans to supply cheaper fuel to the Caribbean.

Furthermore, Dangote recounted advice from Khalid Al-Falih, the former Saudi Minister of Energy, to reconsider building the refinery due to potential challenges. Despite this, Dangote proceeded with the project, facing significant opposition from local and international cartels. He described these adversaries as more formidable than drug cartels and revealed attempts to sabotage the $19 billion project, including efforts by some international banks to force the project into default during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Despite these hurdles, Dangote reported substantial progress, having repaid $2.4 billion of the $5.5 billion loan for the refinery, with significant support from banks like Afreximbank. The refinery is anticipated to play a crucial role in transforming Nigeria’s energy sector and economy.

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