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Senate committee: Nigeria lost N1.3trn to oil theft in 8 months

Senate committee: Nigeria lost N1.3trn to oil theft in 8 months
November 23
08:46 2022

The senate committee investigating oil theft and its consequent damage to the country’s economy says Nigeria lost N1.3 trillion ($2 billion) to oil theft between January and August 2022.

The ad-hoc committee was set up to investigate oil lifting, theft, and the impact on petroleum production and oil revenues.

The committee is chaired by Akpan Bassey, chairman, senate committee on petroleum (Upstream).

At the plenary on Tuesday, the committee, in its report, said the “Nigeria lost over $2 billion to oil theft between January and August 2022, with consequent loss of revenue that would support the country’s fiscal deficits and budget implementation”.

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The report revealed concerted efforts being made against the crime by all stakeholders, adding that they had started yielding results, with Forcados Terminal producing 500,000 barrels per day now as against zero production in the first six months of the year.

“Bonny Terminals was also producing 87,000 barrels of oil per day now as against zero production a couple of months ago due to activities of economic saboteurs,” the report read.

The committee however adopted a 16 – point recommendation that states that “the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited should stop undermining Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) and Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) from performing their functions.

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“The provisions of the Petroleum Industry Act should be adhered to by NNPCL as regards functions of the established agencies.”

The report also called for an immediate streamlining of agencies at the terminals in line with the relevance of their PIA-delineated upstream and midstream/downstream statutory functions.

It said the NUPRC should fast-track the upgrade of the National Production Monitoring Systems to enable real-time monitoring of flow station and terminal activities.

“The NUPRC should expedite the deployment and strict enforcement of the Advance Crude Oil Cargo Declaration solution for the detection and mitigation of illegal movement of vessels to ensure adequate revenue generation and optimal crude oil production,” it added.

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“The Bureau of Public Procurement should expedite all processes of procurement for NUPRC to ensure immediate deployment of an online real-time monitoring system by the commission across all upstream oil and gas production platforms for accuracy in measuring production volume by producers.

“The NUPRC should resume full regulatory oversight of all existing crude oil terminals in Nigeria, including integrated ones, crude oil pipelines, issuance of loading clearance, and processing of export permits in line with section 8(d) of the PIA, as regulatory activities at crude oil terminals are interdependent and contingent.”

The report frowned at undue interference of the minister of state in the operations of NUPRC, as shown by letters made available to it by the agency, and stressed that both the minister and NNPCL should allow PIA to function.

“The PIA, as signed into law by the president, must be allowed to function by all stakeholders in the sector as an amendment on it now, will send wrong signals to the international community,” the report added.

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