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NIGERIA: STATE TARGETS US$4 BILLION CHINESE INVESTMENT FOR OIL INDUSTRY

Nigeria says it expects to get as much as $4 billion in investment facilities for oil industry infrastructure as a 40-member Chinese investment team arrives the country at the end of the month.

This is a fallout from the July road show in China where Nigeria signed a $75.6 billion Memorandum of Understanding in investment in the oil sector, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Emmanuel Kachikwu, said after the Federal Executive Council meeting.

Briefing journalists alongside the Ministers of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; Interior, Abdurahman Danbazzau; and Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, after the FEC meeting, Kachikwu explained that the MOUs signed during the road show generally have a gestation period of about one year as both countries set up their teams on bilateral lines to look at specific areas of investment interests.

“We are having a team of over 40 Chinese … visiting Nigeria by the end of this month,” he told reporters.

“I will say we have a one year period to work on this. We expect that some (investment) will come earlier,” he said, when asked about the agreements signed in June.

Nigeria, an OPEC member which was until recently Africa’s biggest oil producer, relies on crude sales for about 70 percent of national income but its oil and gas infrastructure is in need of updating.

Its four refineries are mostly out of action because of poor maintenance, forcing Nigeria to rely on expensive imported fuel for 80 percent of energy needs.

These problems have been exacerbated by a series of attacks on oil and gas facilities by militants in the southern Niger Delta energy hub.

Last month, the head of the upper house of parliament said Nigeria needed to consider selling oil and other state assets to help plug a budget deficit, caused by a collapse in oil revenues that has plunged Nigeria into recession.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK