Dangote refinery sets to export first 2 cargoes of refined products

Amidst scarcity of fuel in Nigeria, the Dangote Petroleum Refinery has issued tenders to sell two fuel cargoes for export, the first from the newly commissioned refinery, trading sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

Nigerians have been eagerly looking forward to the release of products from the $20 billion Dangote refinery after it was inaugurated in May last year by former President Muhammadu Buhari.

However, though loading details were not immediately available, sources told Reuters that the refinery was preparing to deliver its first fuel cargoes to the domestic market within weeks.Media reports has indicated that lingering regulatory approvals had stalled Dangote Petrochemical Refinery’s plan to release aviation fuel (Jet A1) and diesel for sale in the Nigerian market in January.

The report had stated that one week after the January 31 timeline set by the management of Africa’s largest refinery to begin sale of its petroleum product in the local market, the refinery was still battling to cross the hurdles of the several layers of regulatory approvals.

It stated that the development came almost a month after the refinery began the production of petroleum products at the expansive facility.

On January 12, 2024, Dangote refinery announced that it had commenced the production of Automotive Gas Oil, popularly called diesel, and aviation fuel or JetA1.

The refinery, Africa’s largest with a nameplate capacity of 650,000 barrels per day, was built on a peninsula on the outskirts of the commercial capital Lagos by the continent’s richest man Aliko Dangote.

Nigeria has for years relied on expensive imports for nearly all the fuel it consumes but the $20bn refinery is set to turn it into a net exporter of fuel to other West African countries, in a huge potential shift of power and profit dynamics in the industry.

Reuters stated in its report that Dangote declined its request for comment.

The first cargo is 65,000 metric tonnes of low-sulphur straight run fuel oil, which Dangote has awarded to Trafigura and is due to load at the end of February, three of the sources said, according to Reuters, as it added that Trafigura declined to comment.