…Local companies MRS, Oando, Sahara listed
Sam Ikeotuonye, with agency reports
Lagos – The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has issued award letters to companies for contracts to exchange Nigeria’s crude oil for imported fuel under its 2019 Direct Sale and Direct Purchase, DSDP, deal.
The contracts are for one year and involve 15 groupings with at least 34 companies in total.
The contracts are expected to start with October-loading cargoes.
The award letters were issued to the contractors on Monday, according to Reuters.
While the contracts have not yet been signed, that is largely a formality as the terms have been negotiated, the sources said, and the list of companies is unlikely to change.
The contractors include BP/Aym Shafa, Vitol/Varo, Trafigura/AA Rano, MRS, Oando/Cepsa, Bono/Akleen/Amazon/Eterna and Eyrie/Masters/Cassiva/Asean
Also included are Mercuria/Barbedos/Petrogas/Rainoil, UTM/Levene/Matrix/Petra Atlantic, TOTSA, Duke Oil, Sahara, Gunvor/Maikifi, Litasco/Brittania-U and Mocoh/Mocoh Nigeria
NNPC spokesman Ndu Ughamadu, when reached by Reuters for comment, said he would seek verification of the news.
The number of winners is an expansion on the previous list, which had 10 pairings with a total of 22 companies. Oil companies work hard to get on the list, which gives them coveted, and potentially lucrative, access to Nigeria’s crude oil cargoes.
NNPC extended the previous contracts at least twice as the nation focused on elections in February this year.
The swap deals have supplied virtually all of Nigeria’s gasoline for the past two years, as capped prices mean that other would-be importers cannot make money bringing the fuel into the country. Nigeria, with a population of some 190 million, consumes close to 40 million litres per day of gasoline and is easily the largest fuel market in West Africa.
While NNPC has refineries with a combined nameplate capacity of 445,000 barrels per day, decades without regular maintenance or investment leaves the nation almost wholly reliant on imports.