Alweendo sticks to his guns on fuel storage

08 August 2018 | Energy

OGONE TLHAGE

Energy minister Tom Alweendo feels that if any entity should manage the strategic fuel storage facility in the port of Walvis Bay, it should be the oil and gas parastatal, the National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia.

The N$5.6 billion facility, which is still under construction, is expected to be handed over to the government next year January and should expand current storage capacity from 14 days’ supply to 30 days’.

The facility is 95% complete, according to the minister.

“Given that Namcor is our national oil company, it makes perfect sense that Namcor will be the operator of the facility on behalf of the government.

“The operator will need high-level technical skills to operate the facility and Namcor will need some time to build the requisite skills,” Alweendo told Namibian Sun.

“The project is now 95% completed and if all goes well handover will be in January 2019. Given the complex nature of the project it is not unusual to experience some delays.”

According to him, Namcor would be able to run the facility by recruiting skilled personnel or acquiring a technical partner to assist with the building of technical skills.

Swiss company Vitol had in the past made an unsolicited bid to the government to operate the fuel storage facility.

Vitol is alleged to have offered US$1 per year to rent the facility for ten years. In addition, Vitol also offered to pay the government N$160 million as part of the transaction.

The Namibian newspaper in February reported that Vitol SA had proposed to operate the storage facility for a maximum of ten years, but it was open to a 15-to-20-year deal.

According to the report, the Vitol offer was made in November 2017.

Vitol submitted the proposal to finance minister Calle Schlettwein, who forwarded it to the cabinet for consideration, The Namibian reported.

Vitol would offer only 30 cubic metres (or 30 000 litres) of the total 70 000 cubic metres petroleum storage space to the government for emergency uses.

The rest of the storage space, 69 997 cubic metres, would be used by Vitol. This meant that Vitol would use 99.9% of the facility, which was built to store Namibia's strategic petroleum reserves.

Vitol also promised to supply 19 000 cubic metres of diesel and 12 700 cubic metres of unleaded petrol to Namibian fuel stations, a proposal described by a source as a move that would hand the Swiss company 45% of the Namibian fuel market.

The fuel storage facility will be the largest in the country, and the first to be 100% owned by the government.

Alweendo also briefly touched on a request by Namcor to have 50% of its fuel import mandate restored.

The mandate was revoked in 2010 after Namcor became technically insolvent. The idea to restore the mandate was pushed by then chairperson of Namcor, Johannes !Gawaxab.

Should Namcor succeed in its bid to have the mandate restored, it would be responsible for importing up to 50% of Namibia’s fuel needs.

Alweendo said his ministry had not yet received a formal request from Namcor.

“Namcor has not as yet formally requested the restoration of its import mandate. When they do so the government will look at the measures that Namcor has put in place to avoid the pitfalls experienced the last time when they had the mandate,” he said.

Similar News

 

Stable rand to help fuel prices

2 weeks ago - 03 January 2019 | Energy

Simonis Storm analyst Indileni Nanghonga believes that fuel prices could drop further if the rand strengthens against the US dollar. This follows a reduction...

Southern RED set for 2019

2 weeks ago - 28 December 2018 | Energy

The establishment of the Southern Regional Electricity Distributor is expected to be completed in 2019 following the finalisation of a formula that will reimburse local...

Less time at the pump, more fun on the...

1 month - 04 December 2018 | Energy

Due to increasing crude oil prices and exchange rate depreciation, Namibians now pay record prices for fuel at filling stations. These increases place even greater...

Millions invested in Trekkopje solar project

3 months ago - 27 September 2018 | Energy

Bank Windhoek, in conjunction with Enertronica Group, recently financed the construction of the Trekkopje solar project in the Erongo Region as part of the development...

Nored accused of 'daylight robbery'

4 months ago - 18 September 2018 | Energy

Nored has failed to explain how an already settled account of N$7 411 ballooned to N$32 343.A 73-year-old resident of Ekolyanaambo village near Ondangwa in...

Namcor will explain

4 months ago - 17 September 2018 | Energy

JEMIMA BEUKES The National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (Namcor) board chairperson, Patrick Kauta, says he will write to mines...

Alweendo ­inaugurates N$100m solar plant

4 months ago - 13 September 2018 | Energy

Namibia's first privately owned independent power producer (IPP) solar photovoltaic (PV) plant, built to the tune of nearly N$100 million, has been officially inaugurated by...

Motorists irked by fuel price hike

4 months ago - 05 September 2018 | Energy

“Ungodly” is how one Windhoek motorist reacted to the news that fuel prices increased by 40 cents a litre at midnight.The Walvis Bay pump price...

More fuel shocks

5 months ago - 17 August 2018 | Energy

Independent economist Klaus Schade says the weakening of the South African rand means motorists in that country and Namibia will continue to fork out more...

Nam still too reliant on power imports

5 months ago - 13 August 2018 | Energy

Namibia is in the process of becoming more self-sufficient in terms of electricity production, the minister of mines and energy, Tom Alweendo, said last week...

Latest News

Human-wildlife incidents rise to 8...

23 hours ago | Environment

A total of 8 067 human-wildlife conflict incidents were recorded in Namibia's conservancies during 2017. These were recorded in 71 of the country's 83 conservancies...

Tame price monster smirks

23 hours ago | Economics

Jo-Maré Duddy Although Namibians enjoyed significant inflation relief last year in the two heavyweights in the consumer basket compared to 2017, they had to endure...

Ex-cop sorry for murder

23 hours ago | Justice

A former senior police officer, who was found guilty of killing a teenager and wounding a woman at Gobabis three years ago, has apologised to...

The jobs bomb has exploded

23 hours ago | Columns

It is no longer unusual to read about the high levels of unemployment in this country. We see most young people unemployed, idle and leading...

New boss for NDTC

23 hours ago | Economics

The Namibia Diamond Trading Company (NDTC) board of directors has announced the retirement of chief executive officer Shihaleni Ellis Ndjaba.Ndjaba had led the pioneering entity...

Coding for African girls

23 hours ago | Economics

Africa Code Week (ACW) 2018 exceeded all expectations by empowering 2.3 million young people from 37 African countries with digital and coding skills, compared to...

Conservancies make a difference

23 hours ago | Environment

Community conservation, encompassing 19% of Namibia's land and over 210 000 rural residents, is contributing to the national economy, rural development and to poverty alleviation....

Hong Kong's red-hot property market...

23 hours ago | Economics

For young Hong Kong residents like Wilson Leung getting a foothold on the city's property ladder has long been a near impossible task, but with...

Socialism with Namibian characteristics

23 hours ago | Columns

By Dr Ngarikutuke TjiriangeThe end of 2018 was a time to be remembered. I do not remember any other time towards the end of the...

Load More