By the OGJ Online Staff
HOUSTON, Mar. 5�Amakpe International Refineries Ltd. has awarded a contract to Ventech Engineers Inc., Pasadena, Tex., for what Ventech says is Nigeria's first privately held and privately financed oil refinery.
Ventech is responsible for the design of the 12,000 b/d refinery and construction of preassembled modules for shipment to Eket, Akwa Ibom state.
The plant will be adjacent to ExxonMobil Corp.'s Qua Iboe terminal, said Ventech, and will process Qua Iboe crude into naphtha, gasoline, kerosine jet fuel, diesel, gas oil, and fuel oil.
Startup is expected in December.
Official encouragement of private investment of the oil and gas industry was a factor in the project, said Ventech.
The country has four refineries, but mechanical problems often keep them from operating at peak capacity, creating chronic shortages of oil products.