The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has urged the federal government to adopt the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) model to revive the country’s four ailing refineries.
Speaking in Lagos during a media briefing, the President of PENGASSAN, Ndukaku Ohaeri, said the lack of significant investment in the industry has continue to limit the overall contribution of the sector to economic growth and development.
“We continue to advocate the application of the NLNG ownership and operating model for our refineries as one of the best ways to maximise those national assets,” Ohaeri stated.
He called on government to look beyond politics and reconsider the passage of the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) as the bill would remove some of the barriers of efficiency, address loopholes of corruption and position the industry for greater competitiveness and productivity.
The PENGASSAN president called for the inclusion of a clause that mandates International Oil Companies (IOCs) to refine certain percentage of their crude production in-country.
Ohaeri lauded the efforts of the government to harness gas flared through the Nigeria Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGDCP) in reducing the country’s carbon print in the atmosphere, thereby resulting in ozone layer depletion and climate change.
According to him, “We believe government should support several gas-to-power initiatives, domestic gas commercialisation as well as develop a legal and fiscal framework to develop the Non-Associated Gas (NAG). We believe significant investment should be made in the area of gas and we are particularly glad that the Final Investment Decision (FID) for NLNG Train 7 has been signed. We also need to start developing renewables, the emerging market in the energy sector so as to capture potential and opportunities.”
He stated that infrastructure development should be taken as a matter of national emergency, adding that while the sum of N2.46trillion has been earmarked for 2020 budget for capital expenditure, “we call for efficiency and accountability to ensure that funds are judiciously utilised to develop critical infrastructures.”
He further remarked that the fight against corruption requires proactive measures, noting that government needs to have the political will and courage to eliminate corruption, while setting up special anti-corruption tribunals to quickly prosecute corruption cases using the consequences management principles.
The PENGASSAN president urged government to address the issue of multiple taxation which has become a threat to the growth of business enterprise across the country, “we need to move beyond the rhetoric of failed attempts to harmonizing tax laws as it concerns business ventures in Nigeria.”
Ohaeri added: “Avenues for whistleblowing needs to be created and the anti-corruption agencies need to be strengthened to adopt a proactive approach, devoid of control from the centre. More importantly, the government should ensure that the fight against corruption is not lopsided to secure the trust, respect, and support of citizens.”