04 August 2015, Kaduna – The Managing Director, Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemical Company, KRPC, Mr Saidu Mohammed, in an interview with Kaduna State Correspondent, Luka Binniyat, said the refinery is targeting up to 90% capacity utilisation. Excerpts:
What is the nature of facility maintenance being carried out in this refinery?
We are doing Turn Around Maintenance-Rehabilitation, TAM-Rehab, while the refinery is running. We try as much as possible not to shut down the entire refinery while this is going on. The whole essence is to say, Look!
The TAM that you have neglected for a while will be done; at the same time, those equipment that have been troublesome, and need complete rehabilitation, we will make procurement orders for them.
Is the maintenance ongoing or has it been concluded?
As the parts come we rehabilitate, as the new ones come, we install. So that is the concept of TAM-Rehab. And we say we are going to earmark a period of 18 months beginning from October last year for the TAM-Rehab. So, invariably, by March next year, we should conclude this work
Who are the contractors carrying out this work and what are the terms of their engagement?
We are using purely Nigerian contractors. Nigerian Engineering contractors are very competent; sadly, many people don’t know that. They have the competence and the capacity to do jobs. They can do everything on this refinery. Also, the contractors working around the technically complex Fluid Catalytic Cracking, FCC units are Nigerian contractors.
Where are tools sourced from?
The parts that are needed, what we are doing is to use the original equipment manufacturers of the refinery. They find the parts, find the value, they give us Performance Invoice, and we agree on the price then we open a Letter of Credit, LC, for them. So we are sure of the source and quality of the parts that are now coming. Then the Nigerian agent here will automatically now be responsible for clearing them, and bringing them to the refinery.
And where installation is required, he will be the go between for the Nigerian contractor and the original manufacture – assuming the contractor does not have the competence. So there is no single contractor, because it involves Nigerians and the original manufacturers. And as you know, there is no single manufacturer. Just like buying a Toyota car, there are many makers of different parts for the car. So, we have many manufacturers involved.
What is the capacity utilisation of the refinery before and post maintenance?
We would do all we can to take the refinery from the present operating level of 60 percent to as high as 90 percent. In fact, even now, nothing stops us from pushing it to 80 percent. But can that be sustained, the answer is, no! For example, some compressors may fail; some pumps may fail. That is why we need to change such equipment.
And once we change them, we would have improved remarkably, the reliability of the refinery, and then we can safely push the capacity. As a matter of fact, we can push it higher than 80 percent before now, but then we would be doing it just to test, and we cannot sustain that. But however we can reliably sustain 60 percent operating level with all other things available.
So the essence of this TAM-Rehab is to bring back the refinery to an acceptable level of performance, and we are looking at a utilisation level of 80 to 90 percent. Next, we want to make sure that we can sustain that level of performance by continuing going back to regular planned maintenance, including the TAM, again
What kind of products will be produced from KRPC after the maintenance?
We are going to produce Liquid Petrol Gas, LPG, gasoline, kerosene, diesel, and fuel oil. At 90 percent capacity, KRPC will produce between three and five million litres of petrol, which is about 100 and 150 trucks of fuel.