The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, on Thursday dropped the hint that the ministry would consider ways of securing import waivers for the implementation of the Project 100, where it is necessary.
The government, according to him, has already approved import duty waiver for importation of modular refineries equipment.
He however noted that the ministry may intervene with the application of the executive order when it becomes expedient.
Although he said it is the responsibility of the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB) to raise the fund, there is really nothing like the government paying for the project because the companies already have their financing structure in place.
The minister, who spoke to reporters at the launching of Project 100 by the NCDMB in Abuja, said the nature of government’s intervention makes it impossible to guess how much the project will cost.
He said: “I won’t put a number because I have not done an analysis but it is multibillion terms of amount of work required in the project. We are basically saying we have reached a point when we can take the leadership in the industry.
“NCDMB is going to house this now. It is not like we are going to be paying money to the companies. They already have their capital structure down their financing.
“We will support them when they need input from us to help and work with various governments. We will look at accessing all the executive order advantages that have been issued. We will look at accessing quickly in terms of import duty waivers. It will depend on the project, it depends on the company.”
He earlier said the project is founded on the basis that Nigeria has the capacity to go to the moon.
Also speaking to the reporters, the NCDMB Executive Secretary, Dr. Simbi Wabote, said the board will generate a source of funding for the project, stressing that there is no end to funding possibility.
Wabote said: “We will generate another funding possibility for this particular project such that those who are part of Project 100 will also benefit from it. There is no end to funding possibilities. We will also look at the sustainability of this project itself and we will make sure it does not fail.”
He had earlier explained that over 80 per cent of the intervention that is required for the project implementation is non-financial but the board is already finalising its financial model with the Bank of Industry (BoI), which will be launched in the next couple of months.
The ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Folasade Yemi-Esan said Project 100 is targeted at identifying 100 indigenous oil and gas companies, and provide them with the support to contribute to national development.
She however noted that so far, 60 companies have been identified for the flag-off of the project which is also a continuum.