Thursday, December 7, 2023


‘Unacceptable’ — reps say Nigeria lost N16.25trn to crude oil theft in 11 years

‘Unacceptable’ — reps say Nigeria lost N16.25trn to crude oil theft in 11 years
September 08
07:49 2023

Tajudeen Abbas, speaker of the house of representatives, says Nigeria lost about $46 billion (N16.25 trillion) to crude oil theft in 11 years.

Abbass spoke on Thursday while inaugurating an ad hoc committee to investigate crude oil theft.

He said the committee would look into the loss of revenue and the menace caused by crude oil theft between 2009 and 2020.

Oil theft, according to Abbas, has drastically hampered the growth of the country’s oil production, with Nigeria losing between 5 percent and 30 percent of daily production.


Abbas was represented by Hassan Doguwa, chairman of the house committee on petroleum upstream.

The speaker, who cited data from the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), said the country’s oil production declined from 2.51 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2005 to 1.77 million bpd in 2020.

“NEITI reports also show that 619 million barrels of crude valued at $46 billion were stolen in the period 2009-2020. Nigeria has continually failed to meet its daily production quota as set by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC),” Abbas said.


“Recently, Nigeria’s OPEC quota was reduced from 1.742 million barrels per day to 1.38 million barrels per day. Yet, the country is still struggling to meet this quota as daily production output was 1.184 million barrels per day and 1.249 million barrels per day in May and June 2023 respectively.

“On average, current daily production output is a far cry from the budget assumption of 1.69 million per day. The implication is manifest in the economic crisis that the country is facing.”

Abbas also raised concerns about how critical agencies in the oil and gas sector such as the Nigeria National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Nigeria Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), and the ministry of petroleum resources, among others, failed to honour the invitation of the committee.

He said the “heads of the agencies are not doing the nation any good by refusing to appear before the parliament to answer questions on the critical aspect of the economy”.


The lawmaker added that if decisive action was not taken to address the issue, the country may be thrown into a deeper fiscal crisis due to dwindling revenue from the oil and gas sector.

Abbas said efforts made by past administrations to stop the menace of crude oil theft have been futile.

“NEITI provides yearly updates on the amount of crude oil stolen or lost through sabotage. Yet, the menace of oil theft has continued unabated despite the enormous resources already committed to addressing it,” he added.

In his remark, Usman Rumrum, chairman of the committee, said the volume of losses occasioned by oil theft in the country and its associated impact on the economy is completely unacceptable.


Rumrum called on government agencies and bodies concerned to look for ways to tackle the menace without further delay.


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