Global energy company, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Ltd. has launched a new low-sulphur grade of crude oil, called Nembe. Primed for the European market, production of Nembe is poised to ramp up crude oil production in Nigeria as the West African country pushes to mitigate output declines.
First cargoes of Nembe were sold in October 2023, with two shipments of 950,000 barrels each having been delivered to France and the Netherlands. Meanwhile, a Nembe cargo was sold to global energy and multi commodity group, Gulf Transport & Trading, which was delivered to an unknown end-buyer in France.
According to the Executive Director of Crude and Condensate at NNPC Trading, the new grade is similar to Nigeria’s other distillate-rich blends, including Forcados, Egina, and Bonga, and commands a premium to the global Brent benchmark, boasting the potential to compete with crudes from Brazil and Azerbaijan on the European market.
Currently, production of the new Nembe grade is approximately 50,000 barrels per day (bpd), with the NNPC Ltd. looking to ramp up production to 80,000 bpd by the first quarter of 2024, and to 150,000 by early-2025.