Chinese businesses have pledged to invest US$80 billion on oil and gas infrastructure projects in Nigeria, the country’s state oil company said.
The announcement of the Memorandum of Understanding follows a roadshow in China by Nigeria’s Oil Minister and chief of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu. The deals, NNPC said in a statement, involve everything from pipelines to refineries to power generation.
The West African country, which has traditionally been ranked as the sixth-largest oil producer globally, has recently run into serious trouble, and its oil and gas infrastructure are in need of a serious update, with none of its four refineries reaching peak production due to poor maintenance.
“Memorandum of understandings (MoUs) worth over $80 billion to be spent on investments in oil and gas infrastructure, pipelines, refineries, power, facility refurbishments and upstream have been signed with Chinese companies,” said NNPC in a statement.
On top of the sharp oil price decline of the past two years, Nigeria has had to deal with a huge fraud scandal concerning the NNPC’s alleged failure to pay US$16 billion to the government.