22 Jun

Daily Watch – Indonesian firm to rescue Nigerian refining, Nipco aims to buy out Mobil

  • Indonesian engineering firm PT Intim Perkasa has expressed an interest in building a refinery in Nigeria. Nigeria has been seeking investment in the sector to reduce reliance on imported oil products that consume a large portion of the OPEC member’s scarce foreign currency reserves. Its existing, ageing refineries produce hardly any fuel after years of neglect. A representative of PT Intim Perkasa Nigeria, a subsidiary of the Indonesian company, indicated an interest in building a modular refinery in Akwa Ibom state, NNPC spokesman, Ndu Ughamadu, said. It would have a refining capacity of 10,000 barrels per day. Nigeria currently has a refining capacity of 445,000 barrels per day.
  • Seeds and fertiliser are being delivered to more than a million farmers in Boko Haram-hit northeast Nigeria ahead of the rainy season to combat growing hunger and dwindling aid in a region threatened with famine, the UN said on Wednesday. The Islamist militants’ bloody insurgency has prevented farmers from planting or harvesting crops for years in the northeast, where more than 5 million people need food aid and about 1.5 million are on the brink of famine, aid agencies say. “Investing in agricultural assistance today will provide food for tomorrow, and can ensure people have a source of food even when they are cut off from other forms of aid,” said Nourou Macki Tall of the FA). A UN official said this month the WFP had scaled back aid due to a lack of funds and was now aiming to supply food to 1.4 million people instead of the 1.8 million intended. At least half of government food aid sent northeast for people driven from their homes by Boko Haram has been “diverted” and never reached them, a state official said on Sunday. Nigeria’s humanitarian response plan for 2017 has received less than a third of a requested $1.05 billion to date, the UN’s Financial Tracking Service shows.
  • MainOne, a West African connectivity and data solutions company, says that it has experienced a fault on its submarine cable system. According to a statement by the company, the fault, which is the first of its kind in seven years of its existence, caused disruptions in services to their international connectivity customers. “Early in the morning of Sunday, June 18th, 2017, we experienced a fault on our submarine cable system, 3000km offshore Portugal. The outage, the first of its kind in 7 years since our cable system came into operations, has caused disruptions in service to our international connectivity customers in West Africa.” The company said the estimated time for the repairs may be up to 14 days. MainOne’s customers include ISPs, numerous networks and content providers. Technology Times reports that the impact of the cable fault was most felt on Monday morning as affected service providers had to switch to alternative cables. MainOne offers high capacity transmission to wholesales customers to power data services for Internet access through regular online services as well as 3G and 4G networks.
  • Nipco has launched a ₦4.84 billion ($16 million) offer for the shares it needs to take its stake in Mobil Oil to 70 percent to comply with Nigerian takeover rules. Nipco’s investment subsidiary bought 60 percent of Mobil Oil Nigeria from Exxon Mobil Corp. in October, when the U.S. giant pulled out of downstream fuel distribution in Nigeria. Nipco, which was founded in 2001, now owns 66.7 percent of the fuel retailer, according to an offer document. It is offering minority shareholders ₦417.12 per share for the 3.23 percent of the capital or 11.6 million shares, it needs, the same price it paid Exxon last year and a 75 percent premium to Wednesday’s market price of ₦238.36. The offer ends on June 29. Shares in Lagos-listed Mobil Oil have lost 10 percent this year, giving the company a market value of ₦85.95 billion ($282 million). The shares rose 74 percent last year.