State-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has secured approval from the Nigerian Government to acquire a 20% stake in the Dangote refinery for $2.76bn.

The 650,000bpd integrated refinery project is currently under construction in the Lekki Free Zone near Lagos.

Estimated to cost $18bn, the refinery is expected to be the biggest oil refinery in Africa and the world’s biggest single-train facility upon completion. It is planned to be commissioned by January 2022.

Nigeria Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Timipre Sylva said that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has also approved contracts to modernise two state-owned refineries, namely Warri and Kaduna.

Sylva said: “The FEC, today, approved the award of contract for the rehabilitation of Warri and Kaduna Refineries at the combined total sum of $1.5bn – $897.67m for Warri Refinery, and $586.9m for Kaduna Refinery.

“The FEC also approved the acquisition of 20% minority stakes by the NNPC in the Dangote Petroleum and Petro-Chemical Refineries in the sum of $2.76bn.”

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The contracts for the rehabilitation of Warri and Kaduna refineries are to be awarded to Messers Saipem SPA and Saipem Contracting, the minister said.

Modernisation work on the two refineries is planned to be carried out in three phases.

The first phase is slated for completion in 21 months followed by the second phase in 23 months.

The final phase is planned to be completed in 33 months.

Sylva added: “Work has already commenced in Port Harcourt; already the first 15% of the contract sum has been paid to the contractor and contractor has fully mobilised to site.”