Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State, at the ongoing Oil and Gas Trade Conference (OTC) in USA, defended the decision of the Federal Government to establish modular refineries.
The governor in the event holding at Houston, Texas, commended President Muhammandu Buhari-led administration for the initiative describing it as a brilliant idea that would create more jobs and increase the economic fortunes of Nigeria.
He said the refineries when completed would also curb the illegal refining of petroleum products and the problems associated with it.
A statement by Dickson’s Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, said the governor spoke on the sidelines of the conference.
Already Dickson said his government fully embraced the initiative by setting up a firm, Bayelsa Petrochemical and Refinery Company Limited, to partner with willing investors in the modular refineries.
The governor reportedly told his audience in the global oil industry that as a home of of oil and gas in Nigeria, Bayelsa provides strategic investment opportunities and a conducive and secured environment to drive investment in that sector.
He said that the participation of his state in the OTC was strategic adding that it would afford Bayelsa the opportunity to meet and leverage on prospective investors in various opportunities offered by his government.
Dickson boasted that Bayelsa has in abundance gas feedstock to power the modular refineries.
“It is interesting to note that we already have more than enough gas in abundance to deliver the three modular refineries so we are good to go”, he said.
The governor assured prospective investors that all investments would be fully secured and allayed fears expressed on threats to destruction of pipelines.
He said: “To a large extent, as a state government given our strategic and massive investment in security over the last five years, we make bold to say that our state is one of the safest in the Niger Delta and Nigeria. So would-be investors have nothing to worry about”.
Dickson said that the Kolo Creek Gas plant which is the first independent power plant in the country has been running in the state for years.
He listed the opportunities available in the state to drive investments in modular refineries, power plants and allied petrochemical industries.
The statement also said that Dickson was a guest at the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) strategic stakeholders’ event as part of the OTC roundtable side meetings, where the Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe kachukwu, was said to be present.
At the forum, the governor called on major players in the industry to partner with the state on a number of opportunities in driving investment in key sectors of the state.
He lauded the recent federal government policy directing oil companies to relocate their headquarters to the oil producing states.
He said that Bayelsa already provided the enabling environment to make the relocation of the oil companies easy and seamless through the 3.5km runway international airport presently under construction in the state.
“The airport will enable the oil companies executives to be able to fly in and out of the state without the stress of travel time from Port Harcourt to Yenagoa and the completion of the new heliport will serve the purpose of helicopter shuttles.
“In addition to that, the ambitious infrastructural projects provided by the present government to facilitate businesses in the state has made Bayelsa to be fully ready and open for business,” he said.