The Federal Government of Nigeria and the Republic of Niger have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for petroleum products transportation and storage.
The ministry of Petroleum Resources disclosed this in a statement on Thursday.
The statement added that the signing climaxed the bilateral agreements between President Muhammadu Buhari and President Mahamadou Issoufou.
The MoU was signed by the GMD NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari and the Director General of SONIDEP, Mr. Alio Toune under the supervision of the Ministers of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva and Mr. Foumakoye Gado, respectively with the Secretary General of the African Petroleum Producers Organisation (APPO), Dr. Omar Farouk Ibrahim in attendance.
Talks have been on-going between two countries for over four months – through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and Niger Republic’s National Oil Company, Societe Nigerienne De Petrole (SONIDEP), on petroleum products transportation and storage.
Niger Republic’s Soraz Refinery in Zinder, some 260km from the Nigerian border, has an installed refining capacity of 20,000 barrels per day.
Niger’s total domestic requirement is about 5,000bpd, thus leaving a huge surplus of about 15,000 bpd, mostly for export.
Speaking shortly after the MoU signing, Sylva expressed delight over the development, describing it as another huge step in developing trade relations between both countries.
“This is a major step forward. Niger Republic has some excess products which needs to be evacuated. Nigeria has the market for these products. Therefore, this is going to be a win-win relation for both countries. My hope is that this is going to be the beginning of deepening trade relations between Niger Republic and Nigeria,” the Minister added.