The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) has officially introduced a new crude oil grade named ‘Nembe’ and successfully shipped its inaugural cargo in October, comprising two shipments of 950,000 barrels each. The announcement was made by Maryamu Idris, the Executive Director of Crude and Condensate at NNPC Trading, during the Argus European Crude conference held in London, as reported by Reuters.
The first consignments of the newly launched ‘Nembe’ crude grade were dispatched to France and the Netherlands, marking the commencement of trade for this distillate-rich grade. Nembe is structurally similar to other renowned Nigerian crude grades like Forcados, Bonga, and Egina. It is characterized by its low-sulfur content and commands a premium over the global Brent benchmark. This feature positions Nembe as a competitive choice for European refiners, allowing it to rival Brazilian and Azeri crude grades effectively.
The current production rate of Nembe stands at approximately 50,000 barrels per day. However, NNPCL has ambitious plans for its expansion. The company aims to elevate production to 80,000 barrels per day by the first quarter of the upcoming year, with a long-term target of reaching 150,000 barrels per day by the beginning of 2025.
This milestone in the introduction of the ‘Nembe’ crude grade comes amid a broader trend of recovering crude oil production in Nigeria. The nation has witnessed a significant rebound, with production levels increasing from a low point of 900,000 barrels per day in September to 1.3 million barrels per day in the previous month. These developments signify the Nigerian oil industry’s commitment to innovation and diversification, ensuring that it remains a significant player in the global energy landscape.