Dangote Oil Refining has secured funding from the US Trade and Development Agency to develop the critical human capacity resources to operate and maintain a greenfield petroleum refinery located in Lekki, Nigeria.

"USTDA is pleased to support the Dangote Oil Refining Company’s efforts to increase Nigeria’s domestic refining capacity," said USTDA Deputy Director Enoh Titilayo Ebong, who signed the grant agreement along with Mr. Aliko Dangote, Chairman and CEO, Dangote Group. "This program builds upon USTDA’s long history of support for vital infrastructure development in Nigeria."

"Just over a year ago we decided to address the paradox of Nigeria being one of the world’s leading producers and exporters of crude oil but also one of the world’s leading importers of refined petroleum products with our decision to invest in a 500,000 bpd refinery project," stated Mr. Dangote. "For a high tech capital intensive project like this investment, getting the right human capital to run the plant is considered to be possibly the most critical success factor and the USTDA grant will go a long way in helping us address this."

The training is being provided, as part of a whole-of-U.S.-government advocacy campaign, in support of UOP LLC’s (Des Plaines, Ill.) agreement, through its affiliate UOP Limited, for the provision of technology licensing and engineering services to the Dangote Oil Refining Company for the development of the Lekki refinery. The new refinery will process crude oil to produce high-quality fuels that meet Euro V specifications for reduced emissions. This agreement is a major step forward in reducing dependence on imported fuels and petrochemicals in Nigeria, which the Oil & Gas Journal estimates has the second-largest amount of proven oil reserves in Africa.

UOP will conduct the training program in Nigeria to maximize the number of trainees, as the scope is focused on refining processes and engineering, as well as on health, safety and environmental skills.