As oil prices hit $71 per barrel in the international market on Friday, President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the extra income would be spent on projects like roads, rail, and power.
Buhari said this when Antonio Vella, chief upstream officer of Eni, led a delegation to the presidential villa in Abuja on Friday.
The provisions of the 2018 budget had been predicated on $45 per barrel by the executive, and the senate had adjusted it to $47 per barrel. Oil prices have, however, risen to $70 per barrel, this week.
Buhari also lamented that no Nigerian refinery currently performs up to 50 per cent capacity.
He recalled that during his tenure as a military head of state, all the nation’s refineries were working.
“In my first coming, all our refineries were working. Port Harcourt used to refine 60,000 barrels per day, and it was later upgraded to 100,000 barrels,” he said. “Kaduna and Warri were also working optimally, and we used to satisfy the demands of the local market.
We also exported 100,000 barrels of refined petrol.
“Now, no refinery is performing up to 50 per cent. It is a disgraceful thing.”
Buhari also appreciated Eni for its upcoming investments in the oil industry, which include rehabilitation of Port Harcourt refinery, and the building of a new one.
Vella, said his organisation had presented a technical proposal to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to rehabilitate the Port Harcourt refinery.
He said the firm had also done a feasibility study on a new refinery of up to 150,000 barrels per day capacity.
“Site selection has been completed, and 50 new graduates have already arrived in Italy for a training that will last seven months,” he said.
“There are other upstream initiatives, and a deep water project, with estimated expenditure of $13 billion,” Vella disclosed. The oil company also plans to double power generation capacity from its plant in Delta State from its present 500MW to 1,000MW, spending $750 million in the process.