• Sunday, July 21, 2024
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BusinessDay

NNPC eyes fresh $2bn oil-for-cash loan deal in two months

N1,117/litre landing cost piles pressure on NNPC’s ‘secret’ subsidy bill

Nigeria’s state-owned oil company, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), is considering securing a new $2 billion loan using crude oil pre-payments as collateral, according to findings by BusinessDay.

Mele Kyari the group general manager said the company wanted a loan against 30,000-35,000 barrels per day of crude production, but declined to say how much money it sought.

He said the cash raised would be used for all of the NNPC’s business activities, including supporting production growth.

Read also: NNPC, marketers blame logistics as petrol scarcity disrupts businesses

“We have no problem covering our gasoline payments. This is just money for normal business and not a desperate act,” Kyari told Reuters.

It is unclear which lender would arrange the loan, as three sources said Afrexim would be unable to extend its exposure to Nigeria that far.

BusienssDay on July 6 reported NNPC owes around $6 billion to international traders for imported petrol as traders said the state-owned company is taking more days to make payment instead of within 90 days.

According to Reuters, NNPC’s mounting debt, which includes overdue payments exceeding $4 billion-$5 billion for January imports alone as several international petrol suppliers have ceased participating in recent tenders.

All five sources who spoke to Reuters asked not to be named because they were not authorised to speak on the issue.

“It will be a syndication with critical but regular partners who have been in business with our company to forward the cash,” Kyari said on Tuesday adding he expected to conclude the deal in the next two months.

Efforts to get Olufemi Soneye, the chief corporate communications officer at Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC), to confirm the fresh oil backed Loan proved abortive.

Read also: Presidency raises alarm over NNPC’s non-completion of PH refinery

On August 16, 2023, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited secured a $3.3 billion emergency crude repayment loan — a transaction aimed at supporting the naira and stabilising the foreign exchange (FX) market.

Arranged by the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), the $3.3 billion crude-for-cash loan was also targeted at supporting the federal government’s monetary and fiscal reforms.