By Biola Azeez –
The Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers (NSChE) has said that a public-private partnership is a major step to reviving the nation’s moribund refineries.
Speaking with journalists as part of activities of the 52nd anniversary and annual general conference of the organization in Ilorin, the President of the society, Engineer Saidu Mohammed, said that constant exportation of crude oil and importation of refined petroleum products is depriving the country of employment opportunities and expertise.
“For many years NSChE has been of the view that Nigerian refineries can be brought back into operation and we are convinced that they can be. We have had meetings and suggested to the governments that efforts need to be made to bring the refineries back into operation if possible through public-private cooperation.
“Right now, as you are aware, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation is making some efforts to rehabilitate the refineries.
“We are of the view that joint private-public initiative will be the best that will enable the refineries to come back into a sustainable operation. It is important for us to do that because we cannot continue a situation that the country is just exporting crude oil and importing petroleum products.
“It means we are exporting our jobs, as well as expertise which we can develop in our nation. This is the position of the NSChE”.
Engineer Mohammed added that the society is collaborating with the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) to revolutionize the Nigerian industrial sector.
“The collaboration between MAN and NSChE will add much value to the revolution of the industrial sector in Nigeria. NSChE will continue to partner with other professional organizations and government agencies to drive the revolution in the industrial sector.
“Under the fourth industrial revolution, disruptive technologies and trends, such as Blackchain, internet of things (IoT), machine learning, robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), third printing technology and driverless car, would dictate the pace of development among nations. The Nigerian industrial sector cannot be left out.
“However, much as Nigerian manufacturers are desirous of playing dominant roles in the fourth industrial revolution, they are aware that the road to increased productivity and competitiveness cannot be a walk in the park; that it requires hard work and commitment by all stakeholders”. (Tribune)