Nigeria – Oil and Gas newstrack
The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Andrew Yakubu, on Sunday during NNPC Day at the 24th Enugu International Trade Fair, disclosed that the nation loses about $12 billion to crude oil theft annually, noting that if urgent steps were not taken to check the activities of hoodlums, the nation might be faced with a major oil crisis.
According to him most of the losses were recorded through stolen crude oil and the vast sums of money spent on cleaning up oil spills caused by vandals in the Niger Delta; expenses incurred on extra security arrangements to protect installations; as well as disruption of refining operations, which consumes crude oil locally. He called on Nigerians to shun acts of sabotage, which were capable of threatening the Nigerian economy.
He further called for a concerted effort by all stakeholders, including the federal, state, local governments, communities, traditional rulers and town union leaders, among others, to tackle the menace of vandalism and crude oil theft.
Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB)
The Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) yesterday said it had written to the National Assembly asking it to proactively take into considerations various challenges facing the Nigeria’s oil and gas industry in its ongoing deliberations on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).
It asked the National Assembly in an official memo on the PIB which it submitted to it last week to carefully deliberate on such issues as institutional, governance and regulatory frameworks as well as award and acreages management, environmental issues, fiscal responsibility, financial provisions and public procurement under the new law.
NEITI, in a statement in Abuja also disclosed that it had drawn the attention of the parliament to other issues like metering system, contract management and indebt analysis of fiscal provisions in the draft legislation. It added that the important areas of the PIB which it highlighted weighed heavily on the scale of transparency, accountability and good governance in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.
NEITI’s expectation is that the PIB when it becomes a law, should be in a position to halt mismanagement, inefficiency and lack of transparency which have characterised the sector over the years.”
Nigeria to earn about $10 billion from gas-based industries
THE NNPC Group Managing Director (GMD), Engineer Andrew Yakubu says Nigeria will rake-in about $10 billion as Foreign Direct Investment from gas-based industries as a result of government’s determine efforts to position the gas sector for aggressive growth. He stated “In clear terms, the Jonathan’s administration has outlined three aspirations for gas, which are, Gas to power, Gas Based Industrialization, and High Value Gas Export, which will undoubtedly generate as much revenue and other economic benefits as oil,’’ during an Offshore West Africa conference (OWA), in Accra, Ghana.
According to him, Nigeria has a total gas reserve of 187 Trillion Cubic Feet (TCF) with potential to grow to as high as 600 TCF, and this positions the country as seventh among countries with natural gas reserves.
He said government’s focus on gas development and ensuring its availability for power generation was based on the belief that the spin-off effects of reliable power supply would provide a solid base for industrialization as well as attract Foreign Direct Investment into the country.
Engineer Andrew Yakubu said Nigeria would continue to maintain its presence in High Value Gas Export by pursuing two additional Greenfield Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) projects at Brass (10 Million metric tons per annum) and Olokola LNG (10 MTPA) in addition to the existing 22 MTPA NLNG in Bonny, Rivers state. And that in a bid to earn more revenue from gas, the nation also supplies 130 million cubic feet of gas to Togo, Benin Republic and Ghana and that given the envisaged growth of the gas sector, government had commenced reforms geared towards attracting more investment and enhancing and ensuring bankability of projects.
“The combined impact of Developing Commercial Frameworks for Gas Pricing, Domestic Supply Obligation and Gas Infrastructure Blueprint will stimulate rapid transition of the Nigerian Gas sector,’’ Engineer Yakubu who was represented by the NNPC Group General Manager Corporate Audit, Mr. Isa Inuwa said.
Nigeria is currently producing about 23 million tonnes of gas annually, 95 per cent of the production is exported as Liquefied Natural Gas, with 63 per cent to Europe and 32 per cent to Asia.
Petrol Subsidy removal and students union
THE National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has threatened a showdown with the Federal Government, if any move is made to increase the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) from the current price of N97.
According to the NANS President, “President Goodluck Jonathan has every right to say he wants to remove subsidy on oil. Our major concern is that we are still buying petroleum at N97, the moment he makes a public declaration that he is increasing the pump price from N97 to another point, that is when we will act.
“It is when it affects the pump price of petroleum, that is when it will have a multiplier effect on the masses of this country. By the special grace of God, I’m not going to be a National President of NANS that will watch Nigeria masses suffer without taking adequate steps and actions that I’m suppose to take.
“We will not fight government but government should not force us to fight them. So, we are calling on the government to seek the general opinion of the Nigerian people before implementing any policy that will affect them because without the people, there cannot be any government.”
As for now, he said, NANS were watching the government on what they were going to do, stressing that , “the moment the pump price is increased, we will act. But as for now, it has not been increased, so we are still watching.”
President Jonathan recently stated “We cannot continue to waste resources meant for a greater number of Nigerians to subsidise the affluent middle class, who are the main beneficiaries,”
He however said the government would first discuss the proposal with Nigerians before carrying out the exercise to prevent a repeat of what happened last year’s mass protests during which the nation ground to a halt for one week.
Equitorial Guinea oil blocks available to Nigerians
President Obiang Nguema Mbasogo expressed his country’s willingness to make the oil blocks available to Nigerians at a joint press conference with President Jonathan in Malabo held at the end of Jonathan’s two-day official visit to the country. According to Mbasogo, Equitorial Guinea is interested in tapping from the vast experience of Nigerians in the business to develop his country’s oil and gas sector.
“It is true that Nigeria has been in oil and gas business for the past 40 to 50 years whereas Equatorial Guinea’s situation started just recently and the experience that you have is far larger than ours. That is why we place our trust and confidence in our Nigerian brothers to help and assist us to develop the sector.
“In the past, we have allocated oil concession to members of this sector from Nigeria but for one reason or the other, this did not actually yield the fruits expected. But nevertheless, we are still willing to offer oil concessionary blocks to those business people from Nigeria who will be willing to try their luck again.
“You know there is a great deal of luck issue in oil prospecting in the oil industry. It is not easy. It involves a lot but we still have a great deal of confidence that the experience of Nigeria can always be beneficial to the people of Equatorial Guinea in the growth of our oil and gas sector,” Mbasogo said.
On his part, President Jonathan applauded the level of relations between Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea which he observed had been maintained from pre-colonial and colonial times.
Source: Various News Agencies and online reports