The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in China with Nigerian-Chinese consortia towards developing sustainable biofuels in the country.

The companies include, Obax-Complant Consortium and Capegate-Nanning Consortium. While Obax and Capegate are two Nigerian companies, Complant and Nanning are companies incorporated in China.

The NNPC biofuels programme is expected to centre around sugarcane-fuel ethanol production; cassava-fuel ethanol production as well as oil palm-based biodiesel production.

GMD NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru (right) and President of COMPLANT, a partner of the OBAX-COMPLANT Consortium, Mr. Qin Chun Lin displaying signed MoU on the production of biofuels in Nigeria, during a ceremony held at the Nigerian Embassy in China, Beijing, Tuesday. On GMD’s left is 1st COO Ventures, Dr. Babatunde Adeniran and 2nd Deputy Chief of Mission at Nigeria’s Embassy in China, Ambassador Aliyu Bakori. Also on Mr. Lin’s right is the Executive Secretary, NIPC, Mrs. Yewande Sadiqu. Photo: NNPC
GMD NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru (right) and President of COMPLANT, a partner of the OBAX-COMPLANT Consortium, Mr. Qin Chun Lin displaying signed MoU on the production of biofuels in Nigeria, during a ceremony held at the Nigerian Embassy in China, Beijing, Tuesday. On GMD’s left is 1st COO Ventures, Dr. Babatunde Adeniran and 2nd Deputy Chief of Mission at Nigeria’s Embassy in China, Ambassador Aliyu Bakori. Also on Mr. Lin’s right is the Executive Secretary, NIPC, Mrs. Yewande Sadiqu. Photo: NNPC

The signing ceremony was held at the Nigerian Embassy in Beijing on the sidelines of the ongoing Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit.

Speaking shortly after signing on behalf of the corporation, Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, said the MoUs signing was aimed at implementing the Federal Government’s mandate on clean, alternative and renewable energy programmes, particularly automotive biofuels production nationwide.

The NNPC GMD said: “The aspiration for the exploitation of renewable fuel resources in Nigeria is to implement our nationally determined contributions to the Paris Agreement; part of which requires the blending of 10% by volume of fuel-ethanol in gasoline and 20% by volume of biodiesel in automotive gas oil (diesel) for use in the transportation sector.”

He explained that for a country like Nigeria with a daily consumption of over 65 million litres of automotive fuels, it was obvious that enormous volumes of fuel-ethanol and biodiesel would be needed to meet this obligation.

According to him, meeting and sustaining the target required strategic investment in more than 10 large biofuels complexes across the country.

Baru, who noted that the execution of the two MoUs would help develop the first biofuel production complex in the country, disclosed that before the end of the year, the development of not less than three other complexes would commence in the country.

He assured that the state-owned oil corporation was poised to domesticating the alternative fuels production towards a thriving commercial Biofuels Industry which would not only create jobs and rural wealth for the populace but would also complement international efforts towards curbing global warming.

He described the renewable energy project as dear to the present administration, saying that is why, shortly after assuming office as GMD, he made it one of the cardinal programmes of his corporate vision of 12 Business Focus Areas (BUFA).

While assuring the two consortia that Nigeria’s investment climate under President Buhari was transparent and conducive to willing Investors, the NNPC boss charged them to commence the implementation of the biofuels projects without any further delay as preliminary studies on the programme show clear financial indices that are very encouraging for business growth.

Speaking on behalf of the Obax-Complant Consortium, President of Complant, Mr Gu Haitao, expressed delight over the signing of the MoU, and expressed the hope that it “would culminate into helping NNPC achieve Nigeria’s renewable energy aspirations.”

Also responding on behalf of the Capegate-Nanning Consortium, Chairman of the Nanning Board, Mr Qin Chun Lin, said that his team was looking forward to a great partnership with the NNPC on biofuels production