Nigeria awards crude-for-product swap deals to 15 firms

ABUJA (Reuters) - Nigerian state oil company NNPC said on Sunday that 15 companies had won the right to swap the nation’s crude oil for fuels following a tender for the deals.

About 132 companies bid for the deals, Nigerian National Petroleum Corp (NNPC) said in May. The tender for the one-year contracts effective Oct. 1, dubbed direct sale, direct-purchase (DSDP), was issued in March.

Nigeria is almost entirely reliant on imported fuel because of years of neglect at its own refineries. It has leaned heavily on the swap arrangements to get fuel, particularly gasoline, as other would-be importers struggle to make money due to price caps.

NNPC said the companies that won the bids were made up of consortia of 15 companies including Vitol [VITOLV.UL], Trafigura [TRAFGF.UL], oil major BP and local downstream companies.

Since the scheme was introduced in 2016, replacing a program that paid subsidies to importers, NNPC has said it had saved the nation $2.2 billion and supplied some 90 percent of its import requirements.

Reporting by Alexis Akwagyiram; Additional reporting by Camillus Eboh; Writing by Chijioke Ohuocha; Editing by Peter Cooney