By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), as part of efforts to jump-start its diversification into the health care business, has requested a deeper collaboration with India in the area of expertise and state-of-the-art medical equipment to revitalize its 52 clinics across the country.
Group Managing Director of NNPC, Dr Maikanti Baru, made this proposition on Thursday in Abuja when he received the Indian High Commissioner, Mr Nagabushana Reddy.
Mr Baru said such cooperation would reduce the trend of medical tourism from Nigeria to various countries.
The GMD said the state-owned oil firm was already discussing with some Indian health care providers to come into the country and help grow the capacities of its medical staff with the aim of putting in place world class health care facilities in-country.
NNPC GMD urged the High Commissioner to encourage Indian oil and gas companies to participate in the forthcoming marginal fields bid round, adding that their participation would further deepen the bilateral relations between Nigeria and India.
Dr Baru noted that there existed a symbiotic commercial relationship between the Nigeria and India which has led to the increase of daily crude oil supply to India to 30,000 barrels per day in 2017.
“We recognize that India is one of the highest off-takers of Nigeria’s crude oil and we are ready to ensure that this harmonious economic relationship is sustained going forward,” Dr Baru averred.
On his part, Mr Reddy, said India and Nigeria had very high bilateral relations adding that India was ready to further expand the diverse collaboration in economic, trade, commerce and security.
He stated that India was one of the highest importers of Nigeria’s crude oil and applauded the NNPC for keeping to the terms of the contracts with three of its indigenous companies, stressing that the visit was to further consolidate the gains of previous engagements.
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