…Pledge to strengthen trade ties
06 August 2016, Sweetcrude, Abuja – The Spanish Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Alfonso Barnuevo, has disclosed that his country was currently spending about €4.6bn (N1.6tn) on the purchase of Nigerian oil and gas.
Barnuevo, who stated this when he paid a visit to the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Dr. Maikanti Baru, stated that Nigeria and Spain had an established cordial relationship dating back to over three decades.
According to him, Spain is Nigeria’s second best customer in the area of oil and gas, as the country currently buys about €4.6bn worth of oil and gas from Nigeria, adding that the Spanish national oil firm, REPSOL, was ready to work with the NNPC.
The ambassador, in a statement issued by NNPC’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Department, Mr. Garba Deen Mohammed, was quoted as saying, “This visit is to further strengthen these good ties between our nations and in particular, between the NNPC and REPSOL.”
According to Barnuevo, Spain is Nigeria’s second best client in the area of oil and gas. The country currently buys about 4.6 billion Euros worth of oil and gas from Nigeria.
He explained that in the first quarter of 2015, Spain represents 9 percent of the total export from Nigeria, and “therefore, NNPC and REPSOL will benefit tremendously from sustaining this collaboration.”
Nigeria and Spain also have expressed their readiness to strengthen their bilateral trade relationship in every spectrum of the oil and gas industry for the benefit of the two countries. The cooperation will also help Nigeria in strengthening its technical capacity in refining petroleum products.
According to Baru, NNPC as an integrated oil and gas company is currently undergoing a transformation, which includes increasing the corporation’s refining capacity.
Baru said the corporation would work closely with the Spanish National Oil Company, REPSOL, to improve the technical capacities of the Nigerian refineries.
“As you know, we have challenges with our refineries, and with REPSOL refining about 900,000 barrels of crude oil per day, we can collaborate on that, going forward.
“While we are fixing our refineries, we also have the opportunity to bring in more petroleum products into the country to meet our domestic needs,” he said.
He stated that the corporation was partnering well with some Spanish companies in the area of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), also known as cooking gas, and expressed NNPC’s desire to boost safer energy utilisation in the country through promotion of LPG consumption.
He stated that the NNPC was also working on the Trans-Sahara Gas Pipeline Project and would rely on the technical support of some Spanish companies towards addressing the challenges of gas supply.