The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) on Wednesday (14 April) held a meeting to seeks cooperation with refinery operators and bunker fuel suppliers to ensure availability of IMO 2020 compliant marine fuels that have a sulphur limit of 0.5%.
“As the country’s shipping regulator, we have had interfaces with the relevant stakeholders on how to reach a win-win agreement on Nigeria’s compliance with the IMO sulphur content cap. We are happy to announce that the coast is clear for us to achieve this mandate,” said Dr. Bashir Jamoh, Director-General of NIMASA.
“Nigeria has an advantage ab initio, because we produce low sulphur crude. The challenge for us now is conversion of this advantage to availability of bunker fuels that meet the IMO mandate.
“I make bold to say that we have all it takes to be the bunker fuel hub for Sub-Saharan Africa. There is a $2 billion bunker fuel market in Sub-Saharan Africa waiting to be harnessed by our business men and women.”
Jamoh added, “our refineries are not working at full-capacity, and this is an opportunity for the modular and other private refineries to come in to fill a vital gap in the marine fuel supply chain. Bunker fuel is a critical element in the shipping business.
“With the coming into effect of IMO 2020, we assure you as an Agency that the country’s shipping community will be galvanised to ensure availability, supply, and, in fact, self-sufficiency in 0.5 per cent sulphur content fuels in line with the IMO standard.”
There was a large turnout of refinery operators and industry stakeholders at the meeting. They included representatives of Niger Delta Refinery (NDR), Ship Owners Association of Nigeria (SOAN), and OPAC Refinery.
The meeting had in attendance representatives of government agencies, including the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), and Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
In their contributions, representatives of the refineries and fuel oil suppliers pledged their cooperation with NIMASA and other relevant government agencies in the attempt to make the required fuel accessible.
Photo credit: NIMASA
Published: 19 April, 2021
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