Indigenization of the workforce of the Dangote Refineries seem to pre-occupy the management of the company. Apparently, the Management of Dangote Oil Refinery Company (DORC), is formulating transitory technology no how to empower indigenous engineers to manage and operate its refineries.
It was gathered that DORC has commenced overseas training of newly recruited engineers from Nigerian universities on refinery operations and management.
Technical consultant to Aliko Dangote on refinery and petrochemical projects, Babajide Soyode who moderated a knowledge sharing forum in Lagos on Monday for 22 young Nigerian engineers who were sent to India for training, had revealed that plans to recruit about 900 engineers in preparation for takeoff of the Dangote refineries project.
Soyode had disclosed the training exercise began in 2015 when first batch of 50 engineers were sent to India for the training after which another batch of 30 engineers were sent for similar training while another batch of 30 engineers would be going in March, with another 30 scheduled to attend in April.
These are aside additional 50 being planned for such training by Dangote Petrochemical (Fertilizer) plant.
Mr. Mohan Kumar, the company’s Director of Human Capital Management and Project Support, at the forum, also acknowledged that the young engineers were trained at Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited in India on how to manage the operations of the refinery.
He noted that the engineers had gathered fundamental practical knowledge about refinery.
He maintained that the engineers are recruited and trained to witness the building of the refinery from scratch.
Kumar revealed that the engineers spent two months in classroom training and three months on the job training. He added that the 22 engineers were trained by experts who had over 45 years’ experience in refinery operations, stressing that the training became imperative due to the commitment of Dangote Group to promote local content by developing indigenous capacity.
“The engineers are expected to also transfer the skills acquired to other Nigerians when the refinery takes off.
“The 22 engineers arrived from Bharat Petroleum Corporation, Mumbai in India, where the last set of 150 employees trained in various areas of petroleum and petrochemical refining.’’
Kumar noted that another set of 600 engineers would be sent for training before the end of April,” he explained.
According to him, the refinery will produce 780 Kilo Tonnes Per Annum (KTPA) of Polypropylene, 500 KTPA of Polyethylene, while the fertilizer project will produce 3.0 million tonnes of urea per annum.
It indicated that “the refinery will also have the largest sub-sea pipeline infrastructure in the world with capacity to handle three billion cubic metres of oil annually.”
Dangote Refinery is located in Lekki Free Trade Zone in Lagos State on a vast land mass of 2,200 hectares, an area eight times bigger than the entire Victoria Island in Lagos.