Nigeria and India are fostering new relationships in the areas of promoting modular refinery projects as well as developing Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG, or cooking gas cylinder manufacturing companies.
The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), which is negotiating the deal on behalf of government acknowledged India’s strength in those areas.
NCDMB said it has begun to partner the Indian Government and its relevant institutions with the goal of leveraging on India’s advancement in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to develop the Nigerian oil and gas industry’s capabilities for research and innovation.
The Executive Secretary NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote in company with some senior officials of the Board met with the Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, His Excellency, BNReddy in Abuja where they discussed the Board’s plans to engage the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), the Indian Chamber of Commerce and a host of other institutions.
It also has ongoing relationship with major oil and gas companies including Exxon-Mobil, Shell among others.
Speaking at the meeting, Wabote underscored the trade relations between India and Nigeria especially in the supply of crude oil and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
Nigeria supplies 10 percent of India’s crude oil needs.
He stressed that the relationship between the two Commonwealth countries can be deepened in the area of ICT, manufacturing and processing of hydrocarbons.
He explained that the Board is continually looking for ways to push the boundaries of Local Content practice, especially in key sectors of the economy that are linked to the oil and gas industry and have the capacity to create multiplicity of jobs for Nigerians.
He stated that “the way India has grown its technology companies is of interest to the Board and we will like collaborate with your institutions, exchange ideas so we can replicate your achievements in our Research and Development journey.” The discussion also focused on fostering collaborations between Nigerian manufacturing firms and their Indian counterparts to domesticate the fabrication of modular refineries.
The Board also hopes to attract investors from the South Asian country to establish LPG cylinder manufacturing factories in Nigeria and participate in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Parks Scheme (NOGAPS).
In his welcome comments, the High Commissioner noted that India has the highest rate of start-ups in the world and the feat was achieved through a programme called ‘Start-up India.
He promised to facilitate the Board’s engagements with the Indian institutions, pointing out that the IIT had trained many Indians and impacted their nation’s economy significantly.
He also advised the Board to engage the Indian Chamber of Commerce, which has cluster companies with specialty in ICT and R&D, an area NCDMB is eager to pursue.