Nigeria’s petroleum minister, Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu is confident the country’s renewed push to create a vibrant domestic biofuel industry would eventually pay off when she begins to earn foreign exchange from its operations.
Kachikwu said this at a recent workshop on biofuel hosted by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) in Abuja to sensitise stakeholders on the import and content of the revised biofuel policy of the government.
The policy amongst other objectives, seeks to create a strong domestic export based biofuel industry, and equally move Nigeria towards a biomass-based economy.
The government among other incentives to help grow the industry, also disclosed its creation of a $50 billion biofuel development fund to be accessed at low lending rates by operators and investors in the sector.
Speaking however on his expectations from the industry once it begins to gain traction, Kachikwu who was represented by his technical aide, Dr. Timothy Okon, stated that it was time Nigeria realised the values in its enormous arable land.
“Time has come for us to explore alternative energy and revenue sources with the abundance of land and great vegetation available at our disposal. I believe biofuels will soon become our foreign exchange earner if we can apply both our mind and might into it,” Kachikwu said.
He noted that alternative energy sources were the only solution to Nigeria’s enormous energy poverty, adding, “We can produce crude oil and fire gas but ultimately, the only way to sustainably reach every nook and cranny and every citizen of our country with some level for energy supply is to look towards natural resources such as solar, wind, water and biofuel.”