By Amgbare Ekaunkumo, Yenagoa
The Federal Government has expressed worry over the rising cost per barrel of Crude oil production in the country, describing it as an anomaly that has eroded our net revenue from crude oil sales and depletes the resources meant for development.
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva , while speaking during the 9th Annual Practical Nigerian Content (PNC) Forum organised by CWC Africa in partnership with the Nigerian Content Development & Monitoring Board (NCBMD) with the theme ‘’Leveraging Local Expertise for Market Growth & Expansion’’ in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, said that the nation’s cost of production per barrel of crude oil is one of the highest among the organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries(OPEC).
Sylva said the Federal Government under President Muhammad Buhari is doing all possible to increase the contribution of the oil sector to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and guarantee the security of oil production,” We must therefore take practical steps to ensure that we curtail the various elements that contribute to the high cost of production”.
He also noted that the Ministry of Petroleum Resources under his supervision has selected key priority areas to contribute to the improve production, low cost of production of crude and the increase in the volume of the production capacity of the Country, ”The areas include the Eradication of smuggling of PMS across Nigerian Borders; the Completion of Gas Flare Commercialization Program; Increase of Crude Oil production to 3 million barrels per day and Reduction of the cost of Crude Oil production by at least 5 percent”.
“Other priorities include; the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill; Increase of domestic refining capacity and implementation of the amended Deep Offshore & Inland Basin Production Sharing Contract Act. The key outcomes of these priority areas will be Job creation and Poverty Reduction, which are the cardinal aspirations of the Next Level Agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Government.I ask for your maximum support and cooperation to achieve these priorities and other plans we would unfold in the course of time”.
On the local content drive of the Nigerian Content Development & Monitoring Board (NCBMD) under the leadership of the Executive Secetary, Engr. Simbi Wabote, Chief Timipre Sylva commended the Board and declared that the Federal Government is impressed with its performance over the years.
Sylva said “. At the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, we are proud of Nigerian Local Content achievements in the oil and gas sector. We are delighted at the various capacities and capabilities that have been put in place since the enactment of the Nigerian Content law.
We are also proud that these achievements are well recognized in the continent to the extent that some African countries like Kenya, Congo Brazzaville, Uganda, Gabon and Angola have come to Nigeria in the past for mentorship and peer assistance on Local Content practice and implementation”.
“As you might recall, this Administration had taken strategic steps to entrench Local Content implementation beyond oil and gas through the Presidential Executive Orders 03, 05 and others.
We are also aware of the recent pledges by the Local Content Committees of the Senate and House of Representatives to extend the Nigerian Content Act to other key sectors of the economy. This is because we can all see the benefits so far realised from the implementation of Nigerian Content requirements in the oil and gas industry”.
He also commended the management of the NCDMB for hosting the 9th edition of the forum in Yenagoa and at the magnificent 17 storey building,”. In touring this edifice during my first working visit to NCDMB a few weeks ago, I pointed out that the building project had gotten to the level that it is today as a result of the strong and purposeful Management team, led by the Executive Secretary, Engr. Simbi Wabote. I am proud to say we now have a World Class Conference Centre right in the heart of the Niger Delta and I applaud NCDMB for this testament of an impressive performance record”.
“While we applaud the exceptional work done by the wholly Indigenous Construction Company, Megastar Technical and Construction Company Limited, our overwhelming appreciation must go to President Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR) and the Federal Executive Council for the gracious and timely approvals which helped to speed up the completion of this project. This building serves as a strong attestation of Mr. President’s love and commitment to the development of the Niger Delta Region and I look forward to bringing him to commission this edifice in no distant time”.
Earlier in his speech, the Executive Secetary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, Engr. Simbi Wabote noted that the Board’s 10 Year Strategic Plan is hinged on five (5) pillars and four (4) enablers. Each of the pillars and enablers are supported by strategic initiatives meant to propel the oil and gas industry towards 70% Nigerian Content by 2027.
According to Wabote, with Technical Capability Development pillar of the plan, at last year’s PNC, we promised to support the establishment of at least one more modular refinery, participate in the LPG value chain, progress development of our industrial parks, and provide international sea time for marine cadets.
He also announced that the board has secured approvals for the award of nine (9) contracts from the Federal Executive Council to progress work on the development of our industrial parks in Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, and Cross River states,”. Our immense gratitude to His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari for backing our efforts to domicile and domesticate manufacturing in-country”.
“We took up equity in the 12,000 barrels per day AZIKEL Hydroskimming Modular bringing to two (2) the number of modular refineries we have gone into partnership with. The first being Waltersmith Modular Refinery. In the area of gas value chain, we have secured approval for partnership in the establishment of a 400,000/year Type-3 LPG Cylinders manufacturing plant at Polaku, Bayelsa state and to establish a 168,000MT per annum loading and off-loading LPG terminal in Koko, Delta State”.
“We also got approval for the establishment of a 48,000 liters/day facility in Port Harcourt, Rivers State for the production of base oil from used engine oil. With these partnerships, we aim to reverse the capital flight currently associated with these products as they are all imported. The estimated turnover from these 3 partnerships is $360millionper year!”