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PIA: Boosting Nigeria’s content tops discourse at Bayelsa forum

The implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) by the Federal Government is expected to trigger ample investment opportunities in the oil and gas with…

The implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) by the Federal Government is expected to trigger ample investment opportunities in the oil and gas with some exploration projects already suspended getting Final Investment Decisions (FIDs), stakeholders have observed.

This, they stated, would deepen opportunities for the development of the Nigerian content, create jobs for Nigerians and increase revenues accruable to the government.

These were the observations of participants and delegates at the Practical Nigerian Content Forum organized by the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, recently.

The 10th edition of the programme which brought together industry players and experts in the oil and gas sector was themed, “Driving Nigerian Content in the New Dawn of the Petroleum Industry Act.”

With the signing into law of the PIB by President Muhammadu Buhari in August this year and the subsequent implementation of some of the provisions of the new law, stakeholders and players say the industry is witnessing a new dawn which would be beneficial to not only the International Oil Companies (IOCs) but the country in general.

The Group General Manager (GGM) National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), Engr. Bala Wunti who represented the Chief Executive Officer, NNPC Upstream, Mr Adokiye Tombomieye at one of the panel sessions said FIDs for five critical projects could be made before the end of next year.

According to him, there were low investments in the sector from 2000 till 2020 due to the “sea of uncertainty” surrounding the law.

Daily Trust reports that some of the projects which stakeholders are upbeat about could take off with the implementation of the PIA would add about 1.124 million barrels per day to the country’s crude oil production. These projects were either deferred or suspended.

They include the Chevron’s Nsiko 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) offshore deepwater project, ExxonMobil’s Uge 110,000bpd deepwater project; Satellite Field Development Phase 2 project belonging to ExxonMobil; Bosi 80,000bpd crude oil offshore deepwater; Eni’s 120,000bpd Zabazaba-Etan offshore deepwater project.

Others are Bonga Southwest and Aparo 2250,000bpd operated by Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company, SNEPCo; Total’s Egina 200,000bpd offshore deepwater project and Shell’s Bonga North 100,000bpd offshore deepwater project.

Wunti noted that there has to be collaboration among stakeholders for the FIDs to come, adding that inter-organization rivalry has to be played down.

“Now with all the collaborations we have done, with the PIA in place, with the resolutions of the dispute we have done, I assure you, significant parts of these projects are going to be FIDs in 2022.”

The Chief Executive of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), Engr. Gbenga Komolafe represented by his Technical Adviser, Abel Nsa said with the passage of the PIB, it is critical for stakeholders to devise strategies “for us to optimize business development and sustainability of Nigerian Content Policy.”

“As we forge ahead, it is critical for the global oil industry to remain efficient and innovative in responding to the emergence of renewable energy to sustain the relevance of hydrocarbon resources in the global energy needs.”

Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri called for the empowerment of local firms and workforces to be competitive. He said there was the need to re-engage and build trust across board for the business of oil and gas exploration to thrive.