Dangote oil refinery will buy at least 300,000 barrels of Nigeria's output, NNPC says

ABUJA, Aug 25 (Reuters) - Dangote’s oil refinery will buy at least 300,000 barrels per day of Nigeria’s crude production, the state oil firm said on Wednesday, after the government granted approval for a 20% equity purchase in the project promoted by Africa’s richest man.

“We structured our equity participation on the basis that the refinery must buy at least 300,000 barrels of crude oil per day of our production,” said the Nigerian National Petroleum Corp’s managing director, Mele Kyari.

“This guarantees our market at a period when every country is struggling to find market for their crude oil,” he told lawmakers in Abuja.

Nigeria produces under 2 million barrels per day and has been seeking to attract a shrinking pool of capital for fossil fuel development. President Muhammadu Buhari signed into law this month an oil overhaul bill that has been in the works for nearly two decades.

The government this month gave NNPC the green light to acquire the stake in the oil refinery for $2.76 billion.

The NNPC has said its move to work with private companies was in line with safeguarding the country’s energy security and would not undercut plans to fix its own refineries.

Nigeria, Africa’s biggest crude oil exporter, imports virtually all its fuel due to moribund state refineries, which has prompted NNPC’s interest in Dangote’s oil refinery.

The 650,000-barrel-per-day refinery, owned by billionaire tycoon Aliko Dangote, is under construction in Lagos, the biggest city in the most fuel-consuming nation in the region. The refinery is scheduled for commissioning by January.

The NNPC signed term sheets with Dangote Group in June for the stake in its $19 billion oil refinery and is in talks with banks to borrow to buy the stake. (Reporting by Camillus Eboh Writing by Chijioke Ohuocha Editing by Jonathan Oatis)