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Dangote accuses NMDPRA of indiscriminately issuing licenses to marketers to import dirty petroleum products

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The Vice President of Oil and Gas at Dangote Industries Limited, Devakumar Edwin, said the indiscriminate licensing by the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) to traders is aiding the importation of “dirty” diesel and jet fuel into the country. 

Edwin made this disclosure to a group of Energy Editors at a one-day training programme organised by the Dangote Group.   

The Vice President said the NMDPRA continues to issue license indiscriminately to marketers to import refined products that have been banned in some other countries to Nigeria.  

According to Edwin, despite Dangote’s effort to meet ECOWAS standards, the authority gives license to traders to import high-sulfur petrol from Russia into the country.  

He explained that since the US and UK have issued a cap on Russia’s petroleum products, these products are now dumped in Nigeria’s market by various traders.  

“In spite of the fact that we are producing and bringing out diesel into the market, complying with ECOWAS regulations and standards, licences are being issued, in large quantities, to traders who are buying the extremely high sulphur diesel from Russia and dumping it in the Nigerian Market.  

“Since the US, EU and UK imposed a Price Cap Scheme from 5th February 2023 on Russian Petroleum Products, a large number of vessels are waiting near Togo with Russian ultra-high sulphur diesel and, they are being purchased and dumped into the Nigerian Market.  

“In fact, some of the European countries were so alarmed about the carcinogenic effect of the extra high sulphur diesel being dumped into the Nigerian Market that countries like Belgium and the Netherlands imposed a ban on such fuel being exported from its country, into West Africa, recently.  

“It is sad that the country is giving import licences for such dirty diesel to be imported into Nigeria when we have more than adequate petroleum refining capacity locally,” Edwin said.   

In addition, Edwin said the reason why Dangote can export to foreign countries is because its products meet international oil standards.  

He said this indiscriminate licencing by NMDPRA will only frustrate the refinery’s adherence to standard quality, making it easy for traders to import low-quality petroleum products into the country.  

“The decision of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), in granting licenses indiscriminately for the importation of dirty diesel and aviation fuel has made the Dangote refinery to expand into foreign markets.  

“The refinery has recently exported diesel and aviation fuel to Europe and other parts of the world.  

“The same industry players fought us for crashing the price of diesel and aviation fuel, but our aim, as I have said earlier, is to grow our economy,” Edwin added. 

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