The Federal Government has approved the establishment of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), oil and gas logistic centre in Akwa Ibom.
According to a report from News Agency of Nigeria, the disclosure was made by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylvia, at a gala night organized by the Akwa Ibom Government in honour of a delegation of Stakeholders in the oil and gas industry retreat in Uyo on Saturday.
He also announced approval for a partnership deal for the establishment of a petroleum depot by the NNPC.
While he said the Federal Government will partner with the state government to build a base which will be the first in Akwa Ibom, he also urged the governor to set up a team to work with the NNPC in drawing up modalities for the collaboration.
Sylva said, ‘’I have the full support of NNPC to announce to you that we are very interested to partner you to build a base here. It will be the first here. It has also approved the immediate establishment of an oil and gas logistics facility in the state.’’
He also noted that the visit was a response to Gov. Udom Emmanuel’s efforts in maintaining peace and security in the state.
Going further, the Minister said, ‘’Few concerns were raised on the choice of Akwa Ibom for our retreat, but politics was not part of the consideration. As we go back, work will start in earnest. Mr President has already helped by signing a free trade zone status for that area.
“We went all the way to Ibaka, a very interesting and painstaking journey. Some people in my team were excited because it was a rare experience using the boats.”
On his part, the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel, while expressing his appreciation for the planned NNPC oil and gas logistics centre in the state, he also proposed that the groundbreaking be done in September to mark the state’s 33 years’ anniversary.
He disclosed that President Buhari approved a 50,000 hectares oil and gas free trade zone in Akwa Ibom.
Emmanuel urged the minister to partner the state for the 540 megawatts Qua Iboe Power Plant project.
He further used the occasion to push for the relocation of multinational oil giants, ExxonMobil to Akwa Ibom state, while assuring that the state is safe and peaceful for them.
The Governor said, “I want the Honourable Minister to make just a statement and ExxonMobil will be here. They are not safer where they are than in Akwa Ibom. Akwa Ibom is peaceful.’’
“We are ready to support the relocation. ExxonMobil is a very difficult corporate citizen but the Minister can give them a directive to come here. They process over 15 billion barrel from our shores and that alone should propel them. They don’t have such excellent production anywhere else in the world.”
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He also expressed his readiness to provide support ranging from land and electricity for an NNPC depot in the state.