The long-awaited Dangote Refinery, hailed as the world’s largest single-train petroleum refiner, is set to begin delivering refined products to the Nigerian market starting from July this year. Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated the refinery, emphasizing the importance of public-private partnerships in driving economic growth.
Buhari praised the Dangote Group, led by Chairman Aliko Dangote, for its significant contributions to transforming Nigeria’s economy in industries such as cement and fertilizer.
The refinery’s founder, Aliko Dangote, stated that the facility would put an end to the influx of substandard petroleum products into Nigeria and expressed the goal of making Nigeria a net exporter of refined products.
The inauguration ceremony, held at the Dangote Industries Free Zone in Lagos State, was attended by government officials, industry leaders, and prominent individuals.
President Buhari highlighted the challenges faced by Nigeria’s economy, including the global financial crisis, oil price collapse, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Russia-Ukraine war, which have strained the country’s ability to provide essential infrastructure without resorting to extensive borrowing. Buhari emphasized the government’s focus on creating an enabling environment for the private sector to drive investments and fill critical sector gaps.
Aliko Dangote reiterated the commitment to replicate the success achieved in the cement and fertilizer markets, transforming Nigeria from a major importer to a net exporter, and expressed confidence in meeting the nation’s demand for high-quality products.
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In addition to the economic benefits, the Dangote Refinery and Petrochemicals project is expected to yield substantial fiscal savings for the Nigerian government. Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Godwin Emefiele projected that the refinery could save the government approximately N5tn to N7tn annually over the next five years.
Emefiele highlighted the significant rise in fuel subsidy costs, which are projected to reach N4.4tn by the end of 2022. He emphasized the refinery’s potential to support the government’s fiscal operations and alleviate budget constraints associated with fuel subsidy funding. The Dangote Refinery and Petrochemicals project has the potential to spare Nigeria from massive fiscal expenditures, offering a solution to the country’s reliance on imported petroleum products.