IPMAN said that the government’s plan would enhance the quality and supply chain of petroleum products across the country.
Mr Chinedu Okoronkwo , the Vice-Chairman of the association gave the commendation in Lagos, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Okoronkwo also urged the Federal Government to ensure the accelerated rehabilitation of the refineries, before their scheduled privatisation in 2014.
According to him, the rehabilitation of the refineries will boost their production capacities and guarantee a sustainable supply of petroleum products in the country. “We have four refineries; some are almost obsolete, while other ones are functioning far below their installed capacities.
“These plants were installed with maintenance schedules and these schedules are not being followed; we have several challenges with the plants and they are not producing as they ought to.
“We observed that we can’t even get enough crude supplies because of the high rate of pipeline vandalism and that again constitutes a major challenge.
“The impression most Nigerians have is that we are riddled with a lot of challenges that require serious attention and we are not getting that attention,” he said.
Okoronkwo, however, commended the management of the refineries for their efforts in sustaining the facilities, in spite of their enormous challenges.
NAN reports that there are strong indications by the Federal Government to privatise the nation’s four refineries, which have been operating far below their installed capacities.
The Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, disclosed the government’s intention during a recent media interview in London.
She said that the Federal Government had earmarked the Warri, Kaduna and the two Port Harcourt-based refineries for privatisation, as part of efforts to stimulate investment in the sector.