The Government of Ondo State will partner an American firm, Liquefied Resources for the exploration of bitumen in the state.
Liquefied Resources will explore 10,000 barrels a day of bitumen from Ondo State.
A Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) was signed by Secretary to Ondo State Government, Dr Aderotimi Adelola, on behalf of Ondo State Government, while the President of Liquefied Resources, Thomas Cooley, signed for his company.
According to the agreement, the exploration, which take off immediately. It will begin with 10,000 barrel per day and is expected to increase to 25,000 barrel per day soon, as Liquefied Resources is investing One hundred and Fifty Million Dollars in the project.
Governor Olusegun Mimiko said it is a landmark of sort to the economic development of Ondo State.
He said the initiative has been on the table of past administrations in the state for many years without any positive development.
Mimiko said his administration is committed to seeing that bitumen exploration scale through.
He said his administration commenced the process of acquiring new bitumen exploration licence covering larger prospecting areas and succeeded in securing four Bitumen Exploration Licenses in May, 2015 and has since been interfacing with Liquefied Resources Limited as technical and equity partner.
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Mimiko, who said his administration is ready to go on with the project execution charged the company to start work immediately and do justice to the project, saying that bitumen is a potential area of economic expansion in Ondo State
The Governor also gave assurances that host communities will cooperate in ensuring the success of this exploration.
On his own part, Cooley said they would do everything possible to ensure the realization of the project.
Nigeria,is documented to rank second to Canada as the world’s largest deposit of this essential natural resource, with an estimated deposit of 42.74 billion metric tonnes.
Interestingly, too, this solid mineral is said to be about twice the existing oil reserve in the country. It can be found in Ondo, Edo, Lagos and Ogun states. But the largest chunk of it is reportedly located in Agbabu in Ondo State.