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Second 'Africa Independence Day' as Dangote Refinery Reaches Full Output in June

Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man and owner/operator of the $20 billion Dangote Refinery, delivered a bombshell to attendees of the Africa CEO Forum Annual Summit in Kigali, Rwanda, on May 17, when he declared that as of June, Nigeria would no longer need to import gasoline. That could potentially save the struggling, import-dependent country of more than $4.2 billion (N6.2 trillion) per year, according to reports.

Informing the audience that Nigeria was already free from imports of diesel and kerosene (aviation fuel), “within the next four or five weeks, Nigeria shouldn’t import anything like gasoline; not one drop of a liter.... We have started producing jet fuel, we are producing diesel, and by next month, we’ll be producing gasoline.” Not only Nigeria, but all of West Africa could soon be liberated as well. As reports echoed in numerous domestic and global press, Dangote said: “We have enough gasoline to give to at least the entire West Africa, diesel to give to West Africa and Central Africa. We have enough aviation fuel to give to the entire continent and also export some to Brazil and Mexico.”

Already reported is that the Dangote Refinery, located in Lagos, is capable of producing 650 million barrels per day of fuel, making it the largest on the continent, by far. At full capacity (which it is now approaching), the refinery is capable of supplying Nigeria’s entire domestic needs, with about 50% of its output. In the last days, Dangote has signed a deal for an unknown amount of crude with France’s TotalEnergies, and put in a bid to buy 2 million barrels per month on the Texas oil exchange.

The developments have even put local media in a rare optimistic mood. As Naija News platform put it yesterday: “As the Dangote Refinery gears up for operation, the potential impacts on the Nigerian economy are profound. This move could significantly reduce the national import bill and transform Nigeria into a key energy supplier in the region, promising economic benefits that extend beyond mere cost savings.”