“What we want to do is to undertake a different type of turnaround maintenance that will guarantee maximum benefit,” Austen Oniwon, group managing director of the state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corp., said in an e-mailed statement today.
The NNPC is “going back to the original contractors who built all the units” to ensure “an effective and total refurbishment of the plant,” Oniwon said.
The two units of the Port Harcourt refinery were built by Spibat of France and the Japan Gasoline Corp., according to the NNPC.
Nigeria has four refineries with a combined capacity of 445,000 barrels a day. All four units are currently operating at about 30 percent of total capacity, according to the Department of Petroleum Resources. The refineries are unable to operate at full capacity because of ageing equipment and poor maintenance. That has forced Nigeria to depend on imports to meet its refined-fuel requirements.