FG seeks to balance Oil global market with interest of Nigerians


By Onu Okorie

Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, has advised regulatory agencies and other stakeholders in the oil and gas industry to design regulations that would balance the interests of Nigeria and the global market.

He said it is by doing so that the country can continue to be relevant on the global stage.

“If we must continue to be relevant at the global stage, we must in designing any regulation put in focus how we can balance the energy base load for Nigeria so that we will not be left behind in the energy transition train while still harnessing our rich natural hydrocarbon reserves.”

The minister gave this advice at the consultative assembly of all the stakeholders and distinguished professionals in the Nigeria oil and gas industry who are considering the draft regulations as prepared by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission(NUPRC) in conjunction with the presidential Steering committee on Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) holding in Abuja.

He said the enactment of the PIA is expected to open up opportunities in the oil and gas sector of the economy. “However, the challenge posed by the huge divestments in the hydrocarbon explorations by oil majors in the country in the past as a result of the global energy transition calls for more innovative ways in the exploitation and exploration of fossil fuel in the country.”

Sylva who thanked Mr. President and both arms of the National Assembly for midwifing this new law that is expected to transform the oil and gas sector of the economy said: “With President Muhammadu Buhari graciously assenting to the PIA after the National Assembly passed the bill. The eventual assent by Mr. President signalled a new era in the oil and gas sector of the economy after almost two decades of unsuccessful efforts to have the law passed in the country.”

He said the enactment of the PIA would usher in new investment opportunities in the Nigerian Petroleum Industry with massive opportunities for every industry player. “It is to this end, that the Legislative Arm of Government in its wisdom deemed it necessary to involve various stakeholders and professionals in the oil and gas industry like you and I in the making of these regulations.”

According to him, effective regulations are key to harnessing the gains of the PIA and the Government has a mandate of ensuring sound management of the oil and gas sector considering the key role the sector plays in the revenue generation of the country. “This is why the Presidential Steering Committee on the PIA, which I chair as the Minister of State Petroleum Resources, has played this pivotal role in collaborating with the Commission in the drafting of the first set of regulations, which will be presented for review at this interactive forum.”

The minister stated that the effort of the Commission in the preparation of these draft regulations to beat the deadline set by the law for the commencement of the implementation of the PIA is quite commendable.

He said he was hopeful that the regulations when fully implemented will help in no small measure in the smooth take-off of the day-to-day operations of the NUPRC.