The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has commended the management of Dangote Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemical (DPRP) over its adherence to the local content law in the execution of its projects.

This is just as the board expressed its intention to partner the group for effective implementation of the Local Content policy in the country.

The Director, Monitoring & Evaluation, NCDMB, Mr Akintunde Adelana, gave the commendation at the weekend during the DPRP Nigerian Content Sensitization/Awareness Creation Programme, titled ‘Let’s Walk the Nigerian Content Talk Together’ organized at the Lekki Free Trade Zone, Lagos.

Adelana, who represented the board’s Executive Secretary, Engr. Simbi Wabote, pointed out that “the Dangote refinery project is expected to close a major gap in the supply of petroleum products in the country.

He said: “We consider this as a very important project and we are willing to partner with the company to ensure full implementation of the local content policy. We embarked on this journey with the company a long time ago and we are ready to partner with the Dangote Group.

“Part of what you see to today is part of our efforts to ensure that the company and its contractors comply with the local content policy and they have put in a lot of efforts in this regard”, the NCDMB boss assured.

Wabote described the Local Content Act as the quantum of composite value added to, or created in the Nigerian economy by a systematic development of capacity and capabilities, through the deliberate utilization of the human, material resources and services in the nation’s oil and gas industry.

He recalled that the country recorded losses before the enactment of the local content development policy as jobs were then being executed abroad by International Oil Companies (IOCs), operating in the country.

He said: “The narrative then was that nothing can be done in-country. Plants and modules were fully fabricated offshore without any structure in place to achieve knowledge transfer. Before 2010, we had no active dry-dock facilities.

“The few we had were abandoned and left to rot away. Today, we have four active dry docking facilities in Port Harcourt, Onne, and Lagos”, Wabote added.

Noting that the board’s mandate is to develop local capacity in key areas such as manufacturing and fabrication and promote indigenous ownership of assets and utilization of indigenous assets in oil and gas operations, the NCDMB boss added that the board’s responsibility also include linking the oil and gas industry with other sectors of the economy, enhancing multiplier effect of oil and gas investments in economy and developing pool of competitive supply chain rooted in oil bearing communities.

On the issue of non-compliance with the requirements of the policy, Wabote said non-compliance with the law would lead to the suspension of projects/contracts, penalty of five per cent of project sum, withdrawal of NCDMB’s services, and project cancellation unrecoverable sunk cost.

He listed other penalties for non-compliance as including, escalation to other regulators to withdraw or suspend license, withdrawal of approvals or de-classification of contractor from pre-qualification list, application of the full weight of the law in accordance with Section 68, and publication of non-compliant operators in newspapers and professional gazettes.

In his remarks at the forum, the Chief Operating Officer of the Dangote Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemical company, Giuseppe Surace, said that the programme was organized to create awareness among the company’s contractors on the requirements of NCDMB, as part of efforts to ensure that the local content policy is complied with in their daily operations.

In addition, he explained the purpose of the forum was to ensure that the contractors were well informed about the Nigerian Content Act and by so doing assist them with the execution of not just the Dangote project, but other projects in their portfolio.