Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has said that the N2.8 trillion Dangote refinery would earn about $6 billion foreign exchange yearly for Nigeria when completed in 2018.
Emefiele, who was on an official visit to the refinery complex at the Lekki Free Trade Zone yesterday, said the refinery, petrochemical and fertiliser plants, would not only serve the need of the domestic market, but export products and earn significant forex for the nation.
According to him, the project, which was estimated at about $14 billion (N2.8 trillion), would aid the economic diversification agenda of the Federal Government and save some capital flight. The refinery with installed capacity of about 650,000 barrels per day and the petrochemical plants are expected to be completed early 2018, while the fertilizer plant is scheduled to take off by 2017.
Emefiele said: “I have come here to see the facilities, so that I can also tell Nigerians that we need to support people like Aliko Dangote for what they are doing to Nigeria. This is happening as at the time when we are talking about diversifying our economy away from petroleum.
“The output from fertiliser is ammonia and urea. The output from the petrochemical is polypropylene and polyethylene. The output from the refinery is various petroleum products. These are products that we import into the country today. So you can imagine what will happen to the nation in foreign exchange by the time the fertilizer is completed in 2017, and petrochemical and refineries are completed in the early part of 2018.
“By the time these products are completed, the refinery will not only serve the need of our domestic requirement, it will also be exporting these products to the point where it will be selling foreign exchange to Nigeria, Nigerians and the CBN to the tune of about $6 billion yearly. That is the kind of project I think we should support. We need to encourage more Nigerians to begin to think like Dangote.”
Chairman, Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, assured that the projects would be delivered on schedule, going by the speed at which contractors are delivering on their mandate.