Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Timipre Sylva on Monday said the prospects of importing petroleum products from Niger Republic should make Nigerians proud.
Speaking during an appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Mr Sylva said it should not be an “embarrassment” as many perceive.
Sylva said: “I don’t see that as an embarrassment at all. As a country, Nigeria is a big market, we need products, even if all our refineries were functioning, we will still need extra products.”
“Nigerians should be proud that we are doing that to encourage sub-regional trade because we have been talking about sub-regional trade for a long time and this is how it should be between neighbouring countries. Niger should import from us what we have and we should be able to import from Niger what they have. Let us encourage intra-regional trade and this is one good example of trading within West Africa,” he added.
According to the petroleum ministry last week, Niger Republic’s Soraz Refinery in Zinder has an installed refining capacity of 20,000 barrels per day.