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FG has withdrawn oil blocks from these 5 companies

The Department of Petroleum Resources has revoked five Oil Mining Licences and one Oil Prospecting Licence of five companies.

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The Department of Petroleum Resources has revoked five Oil Mining Licences and one Oil Prospecting Licence of five companies. The DPR, according to a public notice released on Tuesday, claimed a presidential directive “to recover legacy debts” from the companies operating the licences backed its action.

Affected Companies are as follow;

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  • Summit Oil International (OPL 206) – (co-founded by MKO Abiola)
  • Express Petroleum and Gas Company (OML108) – (Owned by ABC Orjiakor)
  • Cavendish Petroleum Nigeria (OML 110)
  • Allied Energy Resources Nigeria (OML 120 and 121)
  • Pan Ocean Oil Corporation (OML 98) – (Owned by Kase Lawal)

NEITI, The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative had, in a recent report, accused Pan Ocean, Allied Energy and some other companies of owing the Federal Government some royalties in 2016.

  • It said Pan Ocean failed to remit tax payments regardless of being in a Joint Venture arrangement with the government.
  • NEITI had prodded the DPR to probe the defaulting companies’ activities in a bid to recover the government’s outstanding revenues.
  • The report stated “the non-payment by these companies will result in revenue loss to the federation. It is worthy to note that Pan Ocean did not make any financial payments in 2016, despite being in JV arrangement with the federation.”
  • In 2016, Pan Ocean, Allied Energy and Express Petroleum numbered among 31 firms that defaulted in paying Education Tax (EDT).
  • 2% EDT is usually charged on the accessible profit of oil and gas companies that operate in Nigeria.

Backstory: Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum, had in February said government recovered N1.2 trillion royalty dues from oil companies in Nigeria.

  • Kachikwu confirmed the establishment of a new automation process for tracking crude oil production and shipment made the “aggressive royalty recovery” possible.
  • He warned that oil firms that had not remitted outstanding royalties to government at the expiration of the agreed deadline might forfeit their licences.
  • Afterwards, the ministry requested to revoke the affected licences, which culminated in the presidential directive to recover outstanding payments.

See link to DPR Press release.

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Patricia

Ronald Adamolekun is a creative writer with proficiency in journalism, financial reporting, financial analysis and imaginative writing. However, his core competency lies in fiction and short story writing as well as feature writing. He is a graduate of English and Literature from Covenant University, Ota, Nigeria.

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Business

TikTok to relocate headquarters to London following approval by UK ministers

The technology firm has been under heavy scrutiny and criticism from the US government.

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TikTok to relocate headquarters to London following approval by UK ministers

ByteDance Ltd, the parent company of TikTok, is in the process of relocating its headquarters from Beijing to London, following a deal that was approved by UK ministers.

A report by Reuters also noted that the Chinese company’s founders will soon officially announce their intention to set up an office in London.

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This move may likely upset President Donald Trump, who had announced plans to ban TikTok in the United States of America. The US considers the UK as a reliable ally.

Nairametrics had reported about 2 weeks ago that the Beijing-based video-sharing social networking firm, had been in discussions with the British Government over the relocation of its headquarters to London. The move has been perceived by analysts/observers seen as part of ByteDance’s strategy to distance itself from its Chinese ownership.

The technology firm has been under heavy scrutiny and criticism from the US Government over suspicions that China could be forcing it to turn over data. Earlier this year, the company was even labeled a potential counterintelligence threat by senior members of the US congress.

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ByteDance recently came under intense pressure from the White House and US lawmakers to sell off TikTok’s US operations. It now has a 45-day deadline to negotiate with Microsoft over such a deal.

ByteDance Ltd is looking at all the available options to resolve its dispute with the American Government. In the meantime, Chief Executive Officer, Zhang Yiming, said no decision has been taken regarding the proposed sale of its US operations to Microsoft Corp.

The relocation of its headquarters to London might come as a surprise considering the current tension/dispute between the technology firm and the United States Government, who are close allies of the UK.

It can be recalled that amid tensions between China and some Western Countries and in solidarity with the United States, the British Government recently banned Chinese Telecom firm, Huawei’s 5G networks in the country. According to the UK Government, Huawei’s products posed a threat to the security of the UK’s infrastructure.

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Lagos state lists conditions that must be met by churches, mosques before reopening

The government specified that the conditions must be met for worship centres to open.

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Sanwo-Olu, COVID-19: Lagos ramps up measure to smash disease as it begins fumigation, Covid-19: Total lockdowm imminent as Lagos fears confirmed cases could hit 39,000, Hotels to remain shut in Lagos, as manufacturing and construction companies get conditional waivers, COVID-19 palliative: Sanwo-Olu concludes Homegrown School Feeding Programme

The Lagos State Government has introduced some measures and conditions that must be met/fulfiled by all religious centres and places of worships that are planning to reopen, following further relaxation of lockdown.

These measures were contained in a press statement that was issued by the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and seen by Nairametrics.

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READ: Malabu Scandal: Netherland, Switzerland to send $200 million to Nigeria

Nairametrics had reported that the Lagos State Governor on Saturday, August 1, during his 17th briefing on the state’s COVID-19 response, announced the reopening of worship centres with effect from August 7th. Now, the Lagos State Government has specified that the following conditions must be met for worship centres that are planning to open;

  • Only regular services/gatherings are permitted to hold. Night vigils and other non-regular programmes remain prohibited until further notice.
  • Attendees above 65 years are strongly discouraged from attending worship services.
  • Consider holding services and gatherings in large, well-ventilated areas or outdoors, as circumstances and faith tradition allow.
  • No face mask, no entry policy, must be maintained throughout the duration of the services.
  • Regular cleaning and disinfection of facilities must be carried out to maintain clean and hygienic environments before and after every service.
  • Appropriate screening equipment for COVID-19 symptoms such as a contactless temperature check must be available for entrants into the facility.
  • It is mandatory to provide hand-washing facilities and sanitizers at the entry and exit point of the premises.
  • National emergency response phone lines must be displayed prominently on the premises.
  • Handshakes, hugs and high fives are not permitted at services or gatherings and this should be emphasized by displaying appropriate signs prominently.
  • The use of stationary collection boxes and electronic methods for collection of the offering must be encouraged.
  • The flow of human traffic in and out of these places of worship must be conducted in an organized and orderly manner.

READ MORE: Lagos sets up N1 billion seed capital for hospitality sector, rolls out optical fibre across the state

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The Governor urged Lagosians to fully comply with the measures outlined in the new regulations, stressing that Lagos State Safety Commission has a statutory responsibility to monitor the activities and operations of all organizations and worship centres that have been permitted to re-open.

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Shoprite to leave Nigeria after 15 years

Shoprite announced its plan to sell off its Nigerian operations.

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Shoprite’s sales drop by 8.1% in Nigeria in H2 2019 over Xenophobic attacks

South African retailer, Shoprite International Limited announced earlier today that it is considering a potential divestment from its Nigerian operation – Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Limited.

This was disclosed in the company’s latest operational and voluntary trading update which was published this morning.

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Backstory: The South African retailer has been struggling in Nigeria in recent years owing largely to increased competition and government policies such as border closures and local production of consumables. Nairametrics reported in April that Shoprite Nigeria lost 8.1% of sales in the H2 of 2019, which was related to the September 2019 xenophobic attacks.

Meanwhile, Shoprite is not the only South African company that has recently announced exit from Nigeria. Nairametrics also reported that another South company,  Mr. Price, would be exiting Nigeria to focus on the South African market. Already, the company has closed 4 out of its 5 retail outlets in Nigeria.

Unfortunately, Nigeria’s ‘difficult’ business environment has been blamed for these major divestments.

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Shoprite, which has spent 15 years in Nigeria stated that customer visits for the year declined by 7.4% due to the pandemic lockdowns. It also noted that outside South Africa, sales only increased by 0.1%, and an overall decline in sales of 1.4% for the year.

“Following approaches from various potential investors, and in line with our re-evaluation of the Group’s operating model in Nigeria, the Board has decided to initiate a formal process to consider the potential sale of all, or a majority stake, in Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of Shoprite International Limited.

“As such, Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Limited may be classified as a discontinued operation when Shoprite reports its results for the year. Any further updates will be provided to the market at the appropriate time,” the update read in part.

Shoprite joins two other South African retailers, Mr. Price and Woolworths who have also announced exists from Nigeria due to a harsh operating environment.

What this means: Shoprite’s exit from Nigeria once again brings to the fore the challenges South African companies are facing in Africa’s largest economy as they try to replicate the successes of MTN.

  • Shoprite is a flagship retail outlet in Nigeria and has been the major anchor tenant for shopping mall developers in Nigeria.
  • With their exit, funding for the development of shopping malls in Nigeria could be in jeopardy as anchor tenants are the major drivers of mall constructions. However, the new owners, could sustain this drive and continue to expand beyond its current coverage locations.
  • The future for Shoprite and its employees will now depend on the ability of its South African parent company to find buyers.

 

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