….. High cost is a major disincentive to investment, especially at this time considerable global competiveness
Can Nigeria’s oil and gas potential be harnessed better for national development? The answer is an emphatic YES! The key, however, lies in active collaboration by all stakeholders, with the media playing a key part.
Paul McGrath, who stands with three titles at the 2019 National Association of Energy Correspondents’ Conference and Award as Chairman Oil Producers Trade Section (OPTS), Chairman/Managing Director, ExxonMobil Affiliate Companies in Nigeria and Conference Chairman stated that over the years, the oil and gas sector has been a major driver of the nation’s economy. Through operations activities of key industry players, there has been significant value addition in terms of economic power of the people, manpower utilization and development, foreign exchange earnings, fiscal growth index, etc. These macro benefits all translate two things –the development of the country and the empowerment of the people, added he.
The Association Of Energy Correspondents Of Nigeria (NAEC) Annual Conference and Awards 2019 held on Thursday at Eko Hotel with Theme: “Harnessing Oil And Gas Potential For National Development” and subthemes ‘Effects Of Sanctity Of Contracts on Commercial Operations’ and ‘Commercial Viability In Gas To Power Value Chain,’ were chosen to gathered experts stakeholders in the sector to identify the issues hindering optimal exploitation and utilization of our oil and gas resources and proffer solutions to them.
Mr McGrath noted that while our industry explores opportunities to sustain this conversation, I am pleased to state that we are seeing positive results of this collaboration, especially on the part of our partner, the Nigerian Petroleum Corporation. The NNPC has play major role for the solid achievements so far recorded in resolving some seemingly intractable industry challenges, with case in point being the Joint Venture Cash Call Repayments. I’m confident that working collaboratively, we can collectively achieve more for the long term benefit of Nigeria, added he.
McGrath reiterated that the media and other stakeholders must therefore see themselves as partners in progress, in the overall interest of peace, progress, prosperity and development our of industry and the country.
The ExxonMobil Boss pointed out that at the moment; Nigeria is the largest oil producer in Africa. Nigeria’s hydrocarbon prospects are amongst the highest today.
However, he noted that there are fixes we must put in place if we aspire to maintain and expand the current investment profile in the Nigerian hydrocarbon industry.
“Nigeria ranks amongst the top 10 countries with highest cost of producing oil and gas equivalents per barrel. High cost is a major disincentive to investment, especially at this time considerable global competiveness. Operating costs are increasing due to an attendant increase in required maintenance and well work-overs.
“Security costs are escalating as peculiarities of the business environments require additional resources be deployed to secure our people and assets.
He further noted that for Nigeria to remain profitable, we need to collectively consider modalities and mechanisms for cost reduction.
“Our government, at respective arms and tiers, will need to institute stable and globally competitive fiscal policies, a robust legal framework and a healthy contract integrity culture. To the extent consistent with the law, operators in the industry will need to explore cost sharing options (citing example in area of logistics, supply chain, security, technology, etc). This can only happen with collaboration among relevant stakeholders and sustained advocacy by the vibrant Nigerian media.”