Oil giant Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) has stated that it contributes billions of dollars annually to Nigeria’s economy. An official of the company, Mesh Mathibi disclosed this at an event held recently in Yenagoa, Baylesa State.
The economic contribution from the SPDC JV partners to the Nigerian government between 2012 and 2016 was $29bn.
In addition to this, SPDC also contributed the sum of $1.8 billion to the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). The NDDC was set up by the Federal Government in the year 2000 to develop the Niger Delta region. Oil companies are mandated to contribute 3% of their annual budget the agency’s operations.
Shell’s contributions could be more
In addition to the taxes paid to the government, Shell’s contributions to the country may be even higher. The company at the peak of its operations in Nigeria employed thousands of people in the Niger Delta. Shell also continues to sponsor several Corporate Social Responsibilty (CSR) projects in the country in the areas of health and education.
Nigeria remains highly oil dependent
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The disclosure by Shell shows crude oil continues to be a major driver of federal government revenues, and indirectly the Nigerian economy as a whole. An oil price shock last year, left all tiers of government struggling to meet their obligations and pushed the economy into a recession, the first in over three decades.
Shell started business in Nigeria in 1937 as Shell D’Arcy and was granted an exploration license. In 1956, Shell Nigeria discovered the first commercial oil field at Oloibiri in the Niger Delta and started oil exports in 1958. The company’s operations in Nigeria cut across off shore and on shore oil production, as well as natural gas processing. Shell Nigeria also holds as a stake in the Nigerian Liquefied Gas Project (NLNG).