The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has said that indigenous companies operating in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector must upscale their capacity for global competitiveness in order to achieve the target of reducing the cost of oil production in Nigeria on a sustainable basis.
This was disclosed by the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari, at a virtual stakeholder’s consultative summit which was organized by the Senate Committee on Local Content.
According to a press release by NNPC, which was signed by its Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Dr. Kennie Obateru, the NNPC GMD said that there was need to amend the Local Content Act to reflect current realities in the industry.
Kyari, who was represented by the Group General Manager, Corporate Planning & Strategy (CP&S), Mrs Eyesan Oritsemeyiwa, argued that there was a need to have a legislation to resolve the issues of funding challenges faced by local players, stressing that oil and gas business required high technical skills and competence to compete favourably at the global stage.
Speaking further on the need for greater capacity building on the part of indigenous companies, the GMD said the nation’s education system has a great role to play in the development of highly skilled technical manpower, adding that any legislation on Nigerian content development that fails to embrace issues of investment in the educational system was not likely to achieve much.
He said, “In terms of the interaction between industry and education, we think these new bills would present a good model that we should work with. People are the greatest assets of any nation. If you have the best brains in the industry today, as long as you are not getting a good replacement for them from the educational sector when they grow old and retire, then your industry will collapse.”
The NNPC boss pointed out that the nation has made some good progress from the era when there was no single indigenous operator in the oil and gas industry to the current situation where local operators have risen to double digits, stressing that the trend should be encouraged.
He praised the National Assembly’s initiative to review and amend the Local Content Act and urged the committee to ensure that it is carried out in a timely fashion in order for the law to deliver maximum value for the nation.
The GMD commended the legislators for the plan to extend the local content law beyond the oil and gas industry to other sectors of the nation’s economy, stressing that it would open up the non-oil sectors to growth and development.
The local content initiative has been identified as being very critical to the development of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector as the Federal Government plans to reduce the cost of production of crude oil to $10 per barrel in the face of the recent crash in crude oil prices.
The Federal Government has provided the sum of $350 million as the Nigerian Content Intervention Fund to help support local participation in the oil and gas sector.
Local Content: @NNPCgroup Advocates Capacity Upgrade for Indigenous Operators
In order to achieve the target of reducing the cost of oil production in Nigeria on a sustainable basis, @NNPCgroup says indigenous companies operating in the…
— NNPC Group (@NNPCgroup) September 26, 2020
Petrol price to increase further, FG to add strategic reserves’ management cost
The pump price of petrol may be witnessing an increase as FG is set to add to it, strategic reserves’ financing cost.
There could be a further increase in the retail pump price of petroleum products like petrol, kerosene and diesel.
This is due to the Federal Government’s proposal of the addition of the cost of managing the national strategic stocks of petroleum products to the retail price of the commodities.
According to a report from Vanguard, this proposal is contained in the 2020 Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) which is currently before the National Assembly for passage.
This means that the passage and subsequent signing into law of the PIB, will lead to further increase in the pump price of petrol. Other things being equal, as the cost of managing the national strategic fuel stocks would, from then, form an integral component of the pricing template of petroleum products and would determine the pump price of the commodities.
Other current components of the pricing template, apart from the landing cost include the National Transportation Average (NTA), the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) charges, marketers margin and transportation costs.
In the new PIB that is before the National Assembly, the new Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority that would emerge from the scrapping of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) and the Petroleum Equalization Fund (PEF), is to be saddled with the responsibility of setting up and managing the national strategic stocks of petroleum products.
The new agency would determine the amount to be charged as a levy for financing the strategic petroleum products’ reserves. Which would form part of the retail price of each of the petroleum products, and also mandate to work with security agencies in deciding areas of the country where the national strategic stocks would be maintained and distributed. The 2020 PIB partly reads;
- “The Authority shall: establish, administer and ensure the storage and distribution of the national strategic stocks of petroleum products in accordance with regulations issued by the Authority.
- Determine and publish the amount to be charged as a levy for the financing of the national strategic stock, which shall form part of the retail price of each petroleum product, such levy to be determined as a percentage of the retail price and be deducted on a wholesale basis.
- And designate, in consultation with the appropriate authorities and national security agencies, the strategic locations across the country where the national strategic stocks shall be distributed and maintained.”
The PIB is also proposing that facilities and infrastructure which are to be specifically defined by the soon-to-be-established Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority for the storage of national strategic stocks would be exempted from the provisions of the law relating to open access.
The other functions of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority in the new PIB include; regulating and monitoring technical and commercial midstream and downstream petroleum operations in Nigeria, and determining appropriate tariff methodology for processing of natural gas, transportation and transmission of natural gas, transportation of crude oil, and bulk storage of crude oil and natural gas.
What this means:
This is going to add more financial burden to Nigerians who are already complaining of the high cost of petroleum products, which has negatively impacted on the price of goods and services.
It can be recalled that the Federal Government had some time ago proposed a new charge on petroleum products for road maintenance across the country. This was roundly condemned by Nigerians and some stakeholders before the idea was later suspended.
TCN MD, Sule Abdulaziz appointed Chairman of West Africa Power Pool
The acting Managing Director of TCN, Sule Abdulaziz, has been appointed the new Chairman of WAPP.
The acting Managing Director of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Sule Abdulaziz, has been appointed the new Chairman of the Executive Board of West African Power Pool (WAPP). Abdulaziz was nominated by the former Managing Director of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), Joe Makoju, who is an honorary member of WAPP.
This disclosure was made by TCN’s General Manager, Public Affairs, Mrs Ndidi Mbah, through a public statement in Abuja on Thursday, October 22, 2020.
In her statement, Mbah revealed that the West African Power Pool was created by Decision A/DEC.5/12/99 of the 22nd Summit of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, and adopted during the 29th Summit of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government held in Niamey, Niger.
The appointment was made during the 46th meeting of the WAPP Executive Board which was chaired by the Secretary-General of ECOWAS, Ki Sengui, and held through video conference on October 21.
The statement from Mba partly reads, “While making the nomination, Makoju noted that Abdulaziz is an expert in engineering with vast experience in the electricity sector and therefore will perform creditably as the new WAPP Executive Board Chairman.
“His proposal was endorsed by MDs and Director Generals and other members of the board,” she said.
According to the statement, Abdulaziz in his acceptance speech thanked the board members and the honourary members for his nomination as the Chairman of the board and assured them of his total commitment to the overall objective of the regional electricity body.
He also expressed the need to move the pool to the next level of operational efficiency and solicited the support of member utilities, especially members of the executive board in this regard.
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He urged members to ensure prompt payment of their contributions to the pool and also continue to collaborate actively with the secretariat to ensure effective and efficient coordination and implementation of all WAPP programmes.
#EndSARS: IPMAN warns of looming fuel scarcity across the country
The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has warned of a looming petroleum scarcity in the country, following attacks on fuel tankers and the disruption of depot operations across the country by hoodlums who had hijacked the #EndSARS protests.
This disclosure was made by the Chairman of IPMAN in Rivers State, Dr. Joseph Obele, while speaking on a live radio program in Port Harcourt on Friday, October 23, 2020.
Obele disclosed that about 10 petroleum tankers belonging to its members were attacked and destroyed across the country by these hoodlums during the protests, although he noted that there had been no fatalities.
He said the scarcity of petroleum products could be inevitable if the situation failed to improve before filling stations exhausted their stocks.
Obele said, “About 10 of our trucks have been attacked nationwide by protesting youths, although there have not been casualties.
“Supply and distribution of petroleum products haven’t really been smooth, reason arising from the fact that 90% of our supply came from Lagos and there has been a skeletal supply schedule in Lagos for the past one week.
“Thursday’s case was worse, [as] all the depots in Nigeria were shut down. We don’t produce these products; we buy from depots and tank farms, and if these depots do not give us products, we fear that when we run out of stock, petroleum scarcity will happen.”
Recall that the #EndSARS protest against police brutality and extra-judicial killings, which started peacefully about 2 weeks ago, was taken over by hoodlums who meted out violence with the looting and destruction of public and private properties across the country. This has also led to the loss of lives and disruption to socio-economic activities.
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