Abuja — Ninety-six companies from various jurisdictions have indicated interest in rehabilitating the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) downstream infrastructure, including critical pipelines, depots and terminals.
A statement yesterday in Abuja by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, Dr. Kennie Obateru, said the 96 companies emerged during a virtual public bid opening for the pre-qualification of bidders for the contract.
It stated that the public opening of the bids for the contract was in keeping with the NNPC management's commitment to transparency and accountability in all its processes and transactions.
The NNPC noted that the public's response to its Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) financing model, was buoyed by the prevailing culture of Transparency, Accountability and Performance Excellence (TAPE) of the current management of the corporation.
There have been renewed efforts by the national oil company to open up its operations to public scrutiny after years of opaqueness, with the NNPC, recently releasing its 2018 and 2019 audited financial statements for the first time in 43 years.
It has also joined the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) as a supporting the organisation, implying a commitment to disclose information along the extractive industry value chain-from how extraction rights are awarded, to how revenues make their way through the government and how they benefit the public.
Through its participation in the EITI, the NNPC has now joined 55 other countries, which have agreed to a common set of rules governing what has to be disclosed and when using the EITI standard.
Speaking at the event, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Pipelines and Storage Company (NPSC), Mrs. Ada Oyetunde, said the exercise was in conformity with the mandate of the federal government to prioritise the rehabilitation of critical downstream infrastructure nationwide.
She listed the facilities to be rehabilitated by successful bidders to include critical pipelines for crude oil supply to the refineries and evacuation of refined products, depots, and terminals.
Oyetunde stated that the objective is to get the facilities ready to support the refineries when they become operational after their ongoing rehabilitation.
"An open tender for pre-qualification of interested companies was published in August 2020 in the national dailies, for the rehabilitation of NNPC downstream critical pipelines and associated depots and terminal infrastructure.
"This was done through Finance, Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) to cover the four lots namely: Lot 1: Port Harcourt Refinery related infrastructure; Lot 2: Warri Refinery related infrastructure; Lot 3: Kaduna Refinery related infrastructure; and Lot 4: System 2B related infrastructure," Oyetunde added.
She explained that the BOT arrangement would provide a reliable pipeline network and automated storage facilities for effective crude feed, product storage and evacuation from the nation's refineries post-revamp through an open access model and charge market reflective prices and tariffs to recover the investment.
Earlier, the Group General Manager, Supply Chain Management, Mrs. Aisha Katagum, had commended the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) and the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) for providing guidance for the project and assured the bidding firms of a fair, equitable and transparent selection process.
On hand to observe proceedings at the public bid opening were representatives of the ICRC, BPP, the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) and Civil Liberties Organisations (CLOs).
The highpoint of the event was the display of the 96 companies that submitted bids for the rehabilitation projects.
Some of the firms which showed interest in the bids include China Petroleum Pipelines Engineering Company, A.A Rano, Process Design and Development Limited, China National Chemical Engineering JV, MRS Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited as well as Fenog Nigeria Limited.