The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has expressed commitment towards providing the necessary assistance for Nigeria to attain a competitive edge in non-oil sectors of the economy.
Group Managing Director of the corporation, Dr Maikanti Baru, said this while delivering a goodwill message during the ‘NNPC Day’ at the 39th Kaduna International Trade Fair, in Kaduna.
A statement by the Group General Manager, Public Affairs Division, said the NNPC had demonstrated the commitment by setting up a renewable energy division.
It said the division was focused not only on developing solar and other renewable energy sources but also on developing bio-fuels heavily dependent on agricultural produce as feed stocks.
“NNPC is suited to provide the enabling environment for the nation to optimize its commercial, industrial and agricultural potentials to attain competitive edge in these sectors.
“This is a commitment which we shall continue to abide by,’’ Baru said.
According to him, the multiplier effects of such ventures are enormous.
“These include reviving the nation’s agricultural sector, generating millions of jobs, contributing significantly to power generation, producing high volume of animal feed, starch and other by-products.
“This is in addition to the bio-fuels that will be blended to our refineries’ petroleum products that will significantly reduce imports of petroleum products into the country,’’ he said.
Baru observed that key infrastructure sectors that were expected to be upgraded included electric power, transport, information and communication, roads, water and sanitation as well as rehabilitation of existing oil and gas pipeline facilities.
“It is my sincere belief that revitalizing these critical infrastructure will emplace efficiency in the new focus areas of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture to buoy the national economy.
“It will enable the country’s entrepreneurs compete favourably with their peers across the globe,” he added.
He lauded President Muhammadu Buhari’s economic agenda which he said had saved the country from the vagaries of mono culture.
“Every Nigerian, individual or corporate, has the onerous responsibility to ensure this vision becomes a reality,’’ he said.
On the recent fuel supply issues witnessed in some cities across the country, Baru said the NNPC had, over the last few months, been engaging with relevant stakeholders to ensure the challenge remained “a thing of the past.”
Baru spoke on the theme “NNPC and Promotion of Industry, Commerce and Agriculture for International Competitiveness’’.
Amaka E. Nliam