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Importing Fuel From Niger Republic Not Embarrassing – Sylva

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Timipre Sylva, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, has said the importation of fuel from Niger Republic is not something Nigerians should be embarrassed about.

Naija News recalls that the Ministry of Petroleum had last week announced that Nigeria and Niger had signed a Memorandum of Understanding for petroleum products transportation and storage.

The announcement was met with widespread criticisms with many knocking the government over its inability to keep the country’s refineries running.

But speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Timipre Sylva said  Nigerians should be proud that the Federal Government is set to resume the importation of petroleum products from its neighbour.

He 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.

“Niger Republic produces oil and they are landlocked as a country. They have a refinery that produces in excess of what they require as a country and they offered to sell to us in Nigeria because this is a bigger market.

“In the spirit of regional cooperation, regional trade development, we decided to buy from them. I don’t see anything wrong with that. If your neighbour is producing something that is required in your country and you buy from him, why is that a big problem?

“So, we agreed with Niger to buy the excess of what they don’t require in Niger because this is a big market.”

“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 they 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.”

Source: Naija News

George Oshogwe Ogbolu is a Digital Media Strategist | Content Writer | Journalist | New Media Influencer | Proofreader and a Deputy Editor at Naija News.