PIA: Buhari has Booked his Place on the Bright Side of History-Sylva

Chief Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources

…Oloibiri is to be immortalised through the establishment of Oil and Gas Museum and Research Center.

…PIA rolls away cloud of uncertainty and hindrance of investments into the industry.

-By Olufunke Afolami

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, said at the opening ceremony of the just concluded Practical Nigerian Content (PNC) that the event has become a permanent feature in the calendar of Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry.

“PNC therefore presents a platform for stakeholders to meet annually to take stock of Nigerian Content performance, discuss challenges and chart fresh course of action for industry growth and sustainability.

By extension also, hosting this event annually in Yenagoa serves to honor the history of Bayelsa State as the cradle of oil and gas production in Nigeria.”

The Minister disclosed that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari has also adopted a strategic action to immortalize Oloibiri and industrialize Bayelsa State through the establishment of the Oil and Gas Museum and Research Center in Oloibiri, currently being developed jointly by Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), and Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) and the Bayelsa State Government.

Sylva mentioned other strategic actions by the Federal Government to industrialize Bayelsa State include the various oil and gas investments crystalizing in various parts of the state like the Nigerian Oil and Gas Parks Scheme (NOGAPS), the Brass Petroleum Products Terminal Limited (BPPT), the Brass Fertilizer Project and Methanol Plant, Gas Processing Plant and Modular Refinery.

It deserves to be mentioned that PNC has continued to grow every year because NCDMB has consistently broken new grounds with the implementation of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act.

The great accomplishments of the Board as well as the activities of other key agencies under the Ministry of Petroleum Resources have positioned the Ministry as a top performer in the Presidential Scorecard, assessed by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.

The Minister enjoined NCDMB to continue on its commendable upward trajectory and to stay focused on the implementation of the Nigerian Content 10-Year Strategic Roadmap to grow Nigerian Content to the targeted level of 70% by 2027.

He noted that the theme of the conference: “Driving Nigerian Content in the Dawn of the Petroleum Industry Act” is apt, timely and symbolic.

Speaking further, the Minister said: “There is no question that President Muhammadu Buhari has booked his place on the bright side of history, particularly of the Nigerian oil and gas industry ensuring the passage of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) into law after over 20 years of debates and disagreements of the shape of the law.

Signing the Bill into law in August is a watershed event in the annals of Nigeria’s petroleum industry which has literally rolled away the cloud of uncertainty that has hindered investments into the industry for so long.

“Hence, we took quick and decisive steps by establishing the Board of the NNPC Limited, constituted the management teams for the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission and the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Regulatory Authority.”

Sylva added that government expects that with the PIA now in place and supported by the enabling structures to ease doing business, new Final Investment Decisions (FIDs) should begin to happen rapidly in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.

With over $42billion (USD) worth of investment agreement signed by various Nigerian entities at the just concluded Intra African Trade Fair (IATF) in South African, there is strong optimism that so many new projects would soon commence in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry.  

New projects are needed in the industry to increase Nigeria production, grow national revenues, engage the local supply chain, create more employment for Nigerians and promote national security.

The Minister said the country is proud of the FPSO integration facility that was developed in Lagos on the back of Total’s Egina Deepwater project. This facility is the only one in sub-Saharan Africa. “We eagerly look forward to getting a similar legacy project from the ongoing Nigeria LNG Train 7 Project.”

The Federal Government is committed to support and promote investments in gas as Nigeria’s transition fuel. This is the basis for Nigeria’s Decade of Gas Initiative, launched by President Muhammadu Buhari in March 2021.

According to the Minister this initiative feeds and helps Ministry of Petroleum Resources to materialize extant gas policies like the National Gas Expansion program, the Gas Network Code and Flares Commercialization Program.

Sylva commended NCDMB for catalyzing key investments in the gas sector across the country in furtherance of Federal Government’s strategic focus in gas development and utilization. The Ministry of Petroleum will continue to provide the Board with every necessary support to deliver on these important gas projects.  

“We are convinced that these gas projects, including the ongoing AKK project would create huge opportunities for local companies in the gas value chain, as well as create thousands of jobs to reduce unemployment in Nigeria. 

As we go on with implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act, we would like to see closer collaborations among the various agencies of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources. All hands must be on deck to develop our hydrocarbon resources efficiently, enhance national revenue and optimize value adding activities in-country.”

Sylva maintained that the conclusion of bid rounds for marginal fields after 18 years is a strong pointer to government’s determination to reinvigorate the Local Content in the production side of business. The emergence of 161 successful bidders for the 57 marginal fields would open a basket of opportunities for local capacities across the industry value chain.

He said in 2022, the Federal Government will be looking to progress the execution of the AKK project. “We would also expect to see more traction with the Train Project 7 and the commissioning of some of the projects being developed by the NCDMB, all of which will add to grow Nigerian Content performance.”

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