The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu said refineries repair cannot be done in an open bidding process.
Speaking in Vienna, Austria yesterday at the ongoing 172nd OPEC meeting, Kachikwu said refineries concession “Is a highly technical area, what we have done is to invite those who have experience in refining, but it’s open, anybody who feels he has the skills and has the money is welcome. It is not just about the skills but the money too.
“Remember, we don’t have the money, and what we call them in is to rebuild, help us manage and recoup their money from the incremental production and that is ongoing, it has not been decided, the entire three refineries are up on the refurbishing scheme.”
Responding to the alleged bias in the selection process of the AGIP and OANDO Plc as partners to operate the Port Harcourt Refinery and Petrochemical Company, Kachikwu said final decision on the refineries has not been reached.
He said the Federal Government has decided to concession all four refineries in the country by August this year saying, “We hope to award the contracts by July/August and hopefully between 12 to 18 months to be able to get the refineries fully back, and the model is to bring investors, who will repair the refineries and they recoup their money from the incremental production.
“We are ready to offer all the three refineries for investors who have money to repair and manage.
“People keep mentioning AGIP and OANDO Plc but nobody has made the final decision on those, they are probably the front runners because they put a lot of work on that but I am not in the technical committee, I am the chair of the steering committee, when the technical committee meet and finish their work, they will refer it to the steering committee and then it goes to NNPC Board, so all the hullabaloo about the transparency, there is no basis for that.”