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Angola Ups Fuel Output

FILE - Gas station in Luanda, Angola May 29, 2019

Oil-rich Angola revealed a new production unit on Thursday that would quadruple capacity at its single refinery as it strives to minimize reliance on gasoline imports.

Angola's state oil company Sonangol unveiled a new fuel plant that will bump up the country's production to 1,580,000 litres a day, contributing to a 15 percent reduction in annual imports.

"We are satisfied with this achievement," President Joao Lourenco said at a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the capital of Luanda.

The country has plans to build three more refineries in the coming years.

"Producing fuel in large quantities will allow us to earn well … (and) no longer spend on imports," Lourenco added.

Angola is sub-Saharan Africa's second-largest oil exporter after Nigeria but, according to government figures, it produces only about 20 percent of the refined products it needs.

Built with support from Italian energy giant Eni, the new Luanda facility is one of several multimillion-dollar projects initiated by Lourenco, who is seeking re-election in August.

The new facility comes on stream as oil and gas prices soar across the world following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.