Port Harcourt refineries would begin to work optimally from October after a Turn-Around Maintenance (TAM), the NNPC has assured.
Philip Chukwu, Group Executive Director (GED), Refining and Petrochemicals at the NNPC said this on Thursday in Port Harcourt during an inspection of the refineries with officials of Maire Tecnimont - the contractors which the Federal Government engaged for the TAM.
Chukwu, who decried the lack of maintenance of the twin Port Harcourt refineries in the last 12 years, commended the Federal Government for engaging the original constructors of the refineries; the Chiyoda Group of Japan.
“Everyone knows that the refineries have not been properly maintained over the years and we have had to manage things. What we are doing now is to have the TAM and complete rehabilitation of the refineries by the original contractors,’’ he said.
According to him, the TAM, scheduled to commence in October, would require a total shutdown of the plants for between 45 days and 60 days to ensure a thorough job.
The TAM and rehabilitation process will also entail overhauling the supply chain and pipelines that bring crude oil and capacity building for staff so as to meet international best practice.
Tony Ogbuigwe, Managing Director, Port Harcourt Refinery Corporation (PHRC) in his remarks after taking the contractors round the plants, expressed optimism that the refinery would begin to work at 90 percent capacity by November.
Roberto Bertocco, Managing Director, Maire Tecnimont Group of Italy said: “I can assure you of a very good job on this project. We have been working with JGC in many parts of the world, so we are also collaborating with them on this project because we have been on ground in Nigeria for the past 30 years.”
The management of Maire Tecnimont, led by the Managing Director, is due to sign the MOU with the Petroleum Minister, Dieziani Allison-Madueke and NNPC officials on Friday in Abuja.