There is a compelling case being made for Nigeria to stop importing petroleum products.

And the man Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu is not relenting in making this a reality.

His argument had been that Nigeria wastes too much money importing these products.

In the last one year, the country has spent about 4.74 trillion Naira on the importation of petroleum products, an amount that is made up of 3.4 trillion for the actual products and 1.34 trillion on logistics.

Kachikwu told a press conference on Thursday said that “the importation of petroleum products between January and December of last year amounted to about 20 million metric tonnes.”

According to him, “The consumption of foreign exchange from the Central Bank of Nigeria was approximately 30% of the CBN’s total foreign exchange outlay, and the logistic cost of that importation was about 1.34 trillion Naira within the same one year period.”

He believes strongly that time has come to stop petroleum importation.

He said: “The domestic refining capacity as of today is six million litres out of a total consumption of about 35 million litres, averaging less than 25%.

“In the midst of this sort of statistics, it is absolutely critical that we move in to try to end importation of products, improve our refineries and get them up to 100% nameplate.”

Interesting soundbite - what about the will to achieve it?