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Nigeria cuts supply to border towns amidst oil smuggling crisis

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To curb the illegal export of Premium Motor Spirit, also known as petrol, from Nigeria to its neighbours, the Nigerian government has sealed three filling stations in border towns and detained five fuel trucks.

Additionally, the fuel supply to various border areas has decreased from 32 million litres per day to roughly 25 million litres in just two months as a result of the government’s ongoing anti-smuggling efforts through the Nigeria Customs Service.

This suggests that throughout the time, about 420 million litres of PMS, worth N294 billion (based on an average price of N700 per litre), did not reach the border states. The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited verified the approximately 21.86% reduction in PMS evacuation to border states.

The Nigerian Customs Service’s National Public Relations Officer, Abdullahi Maiwada, informed our correspondent that the sealed filling stations and impounded petroleum tankers had been turned over to the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority for additional inquiries.

Additionally, he refuted reports that 1,800 gas stations in the North had closed in opposition to the NCS’s ongoing anti-smuggling efforts.

Maiwada responded, “The NCS is still carrying out its anti-smuggling operation effectively and continuously,” when asked if the service was still fighting gasoline smuggling. On the grounds of possible product diversion that could lead to eventual smuggling out of the nation, five fuel tankers were arrested.

Chief Superintendent of Customs Maiwada refuted statements made by IPMAN that the trucks were turned over to the downstream regulator for the oil industry and that the tankers had been given to members of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria.

“The detained fuel tankers were not released to IPMAN under pressure. However, the trucks were handed over to NMDPRA for continued investigation with the intervention of the Adamawa State government, as the offence committed was centred on fuel diversion,” he stated.

Regarding the sealed filling stations, he declared, “In Adamawa State, three filling stations have been sealed but not closed. However the three sealed filling stations were also turned over to the NMDPRA so they could do additional research.

“The NMDPRA is expected to transmit its findings and recommendations to the Nigeria Customs Service through the national coordinator to the headquarters.”

Following Nigeria’s elimination of petrol subsidies last year, gas prices increased last year in neighbouring West African countries, rising by more than 40% in all markets assessed.

According to Globalpetrolprices, a think tank that tracks gasoline costs and energy prices, Cameroon, Togo, Benin, and Guinea are among the nations most affected by this trend.

VenturesNow

Dangote Group optimistic about boosting Nigeria’s falling currency with $30 billion revenue

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The $30 billion in income that Dangote Group plans to generate by the end of 2025, according to company President Aliko Dangote, will strengthen the naira. Dangote made the plan known during a Monday tour of Dangote Fertilizer Limited and Dangote Petroleum Refinery & Petrochemicals.

The plan signals a strategy to become independent from the Central Bank of Nigeria regarding foreign exchange sourcing.

The richest man in Africa stated that the substantial amount of foreign exchange that his companies are expected to bring into Nigeria will naturally increase the value of our local currency and restore the value of the naira in the global exchange market.

When the refinery started operating fully in 2024, its primary focus was on the refinement of intermediate products, including naphtha, polypropylene, RCO, gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel.

He clarified that in March 2024, the refinery began its steady-state production phase. Furthermore, he projected that by August, production will escalate to 500,000 barrels per day with 15 crude cargoes each month, reaching 550,000 bpd by the end of the year, and aiming for 650,000 bpd by the first quarter of 2025.

“Petrol production will commence in July with sales from August,” assured Dangote.

Additionally, he disclosed that the group plans to list Dangote Fertilizer Limited and Dangote Petroleum Refinery & Petrochemicals on the Nigerian Exchange Group in the first quarter of 2025.

He continued by saying that Nigerians would be allowed to take a stake in these businesses.

“Due to the nature of our business with both the refinery and the fertiliser, we are aiming to list them by the end of this year. However, depending on circumstances, worst-case scenario, we anticipate listing them before the end of the first quarter of next year. This will allow us to offer shares for sale and enable Nigerians to participate as shareholders,” Dangote stated.

At full capacity, the Dangote Refinery can process 650,000 barrels of oil per day, making it the largest single-train facility in both Africa and the globe.

Additionally, the largest granulated urea fertiliser factory in Africa is run by Dangote Fertiliser Limited. At the moment, the most capitalized firm in Nigeria is Dangote Cement.

He emphasized that the refinery would produce 53 million litres of gasoline and 1.1 million tonnes of diesel per day, although its total storage capacity is 4.5 billion litres, which is enough to meet Nigeria’s crude needs for 20 days and store products equal to 15 days’ worth of fuel.

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Tanzania eyes law to promote foreign investment

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The Tanzanian government has suggested changing its rules to give Tanzanians living abroad special status so they can open businesses in important, high-priority economic sectors to attract more foreign investment.

The government has introduced the Miscellaneous Amendments Bill 2024 to Parliament for discussion, aiming to offer special status to Tanzanians residing abroad so they can establish businesses in their home country, thereby relaxing its burdensome regulations and legislation.

Through the Diaspora Tanzanite card, Tanzanians living abroad will be eligible for inheritance rights and investment incentives under the proposed immigration law revisions.

Only citizens of Tanzania have been allowed to possess land and other properties. The Miscellaneous Amendments Act, 2024, was released on June 26 and suggests amending the Land Act, cap 113, and the Immigration Act, cap 54, to grant land occupancy titles to Tanzanians residing abroad.

Tanzania is one of the African nations with stringent immigration laws and restrictions on property ownership rights that are placed on foreign nationals and residents who hold dual citizenship.

Before this, President Samia Suluhu Hassan had pledged to examine the Immigration Act. During her six-day official visit to Seoul in June, she addressed Tanzanians living in South Korea and promised her government would make sure Tanzanians living abroad would receive special treatment, including the opportunity to settle in Tanzania without having to go through a laborious visa application process.

As of 2018, the manufacturing sector in Tanzania attracted the greatest concentration of foreign direct investment (FDI) among all economic sectors, according to Statista. It totalled 1.4 billion dollars, which was split among 133 projects. After that, FDI in agricultural activities totalled more than half a billion dollars.

She promised to provide the legislative framework necessary to allow Tanzanians living abroad to send money home through their families to invest in, acquire, and use technology and knowledge that are primarily required for manufacturing, services, and agricultural output.

Samia informed the Tanzanians in Seoul that by 2023, Tanzanians living abroad had invested almost Tsh280 billion ($106 million) in housing, while others had purchased shares in UTT Asset Management and Investors Services (UTT AMIS) for Tsh6.45 billion ($2.4 million).

Through unified laws throughout the EAC, the Tanzania Investment Center (TIC) has been encouraging members of the East African Community (EAC) to form cooperative companies in Tanzania.

To identify and help Tanzanians living abroad register for business and investments, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the East African Co-operation built a diaspora database. The database is based on the availability of enough land that would be a good investment.

Tanzania lacked active agricultural investments, had a weak agro-industrial basis, and received little revenue from cash crops despite having abundant agricultural land.

Tanzania has 44 million hectares of arable land in total, according to data from the Ministry of Agriculture, but only 15 million of those hectares are being farmed for both food and commercial crops.

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