NNPC  Recommits to Building ‘Huge’ Oil, Gas Infrastructure In-country

•Ekpo says public, private sector collaboration needed to meet energy goals

Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd (NNPC) yesterday said it will continue to invest in the development of huge oil and gas infrastructure to make it easy for operators and prospective investors to carry out their business in Nigeria.

The Executive Vice President, Upstream, Mrs. Oritsemeyiwa Eyesan, disclosed this at the ongoing Offshore Technology Conference (OTC),  in Houston, Texas, United States of America, a statement by the Chief Corporate Communications Officer of the company, Olufemi Soneye, said.

Speaking at one of the panel sessions of a luncheon organized by the Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN), with the theme: Sustainable Energy Solutions for Africa’s Future (Nigerian Perspective)”, Eyesan stated that NNPC’s objective was to ensure that there was a healthy balance of energy sources in the country.

She explained that though the oil and gas sector was not where it ought to be, much progress had been made between last year’s edition of the OTC in terms of opening up the sector for investments and infrastructural development.

She identified funding as the major challenge impeding the development of the sector, listing some of the bright spots in the industry to include the Executive Orders signed by the President to open up the sector.

Eyesan also highlighted the imminent resolution of the assets divestment by the International Oil Companies (IOCs) and the aggressive execution of gas infrastructure projects such as the Obiafu-Obrikom-Oben (OB3) Gas Pipeline, which she said would be completed in the next quarter.

Also speaking at the panel session, the Managing Director of SNEPCo, Elohor Aiboni, and the Managing Director of Chevron Nigeria Ltd, Mr. Jim Swartz, stated that their companies’ divestment from onshore and shallow water assets was a general realignment of their portfolios across the globe and should not be misconstrued as exit from the Nigeria.

Speaking further on his company’s commitment to remain in Nigeria, Swartz said: “We are excited about what government is doing to build confidence in investors. We are excited to work with NNPC Ltd.”  

Meanwhile, the minister of State Petroleum Resources (Gas),  Ekperikpe Ekpo, has called for increased collaboration between public and private sector investors in order for the country to achieve its energy goals.

The minister stated this during the official unveiling of the Gazettes on National Energy Policy and National Energy Master Plan by the Energy Commission of Nigeria at the PTDF auditorium, Abuja yesterday.

Ekpo said the task of creating a Nigeria where  citizens have access to cheap, unlimited energy is one that must not be left solely for the government.

 Ekpo said: “In order to achieve our energy goals, I implore our respected partners in the public and private sectors to collaborate with one another. To face the difficulties that lie ahead, let’s leverage the power of cooperation, creativity, and technology.”

The minister described the road to a sustainable energy future as a marathon and not a sprint, saying  it calls for unyielding resolve, innovative leadership, and unwavering dedication.

According to him, energy plays a critical role in promoting social development, accelerating economic progress, and protecting the environment.

“Future generations will be greatly impacted by the choices that we make today. We can create a Nigeria where everyone has access to cheap, unlimited energy by working together,” he added.

Special Adviser to the President on Energy, Ms. Olu Verheijen who unveiled the Gazettes said the documents would be presented to the public for further consultation.

The Gazettes reveal the direction of  government’s policies, and also list the several approaches necessary to accomplish the country’s energy goals.

Present at the event were the Minister of Innovation, Science and Technology, Chief Uche Nnaji; Minister of Defence, Badaru Abubakar; Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, Atiku Bagudu; Director General/CEO of Energy Commission of Nigeria, Dr. Mustapha Abdullahi, among others.

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