The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has ruled out the sale of its multi-billion dollars equity in oil assets across the country to investors, declaring that this is the wrong time to venture into that.
Group Managing Director of the corporation, Mallam Mele Kyari, who gave this hint in a keynote address at the 45 th Anniversary Lecture of the Nigeria Association of Petroleum Explorationists (NAPE), maintained that the corporation is proactive bearing in mind the place of oil and gas in the next 40 to 50 years.
Kyari’s statement was elaborated by Group General Manager, Corporate Planning and Strategy, NNPC, Meyiwa Eyesan, who declared that the NNPC has crashed its cash call debts in the Joint Ventures (JVs) with International Oil Companies (IOCs) to slightly above $2 billion.
The Corporation is in JV with Shell, ExxonMobil, Chevron, Eni and Total.
The reduction in JV cash call debts, she declared, was achieved between 2015 and 2020 from $5 billion in 2015 to over $2 billion in five years, paying about $3 billion of the JV cash call arrears.
Like Kyari, Eyesan attributed this feat to the efficient business plan put in place by the corporation.
Speaking at the lecture held virtually in commemoration of the first Akomeno Oteri Annual Lecture themed; “LONG-TERM FUNDING FOR E&P BUSINESS IN NIGERIA: STRATEGIES AND SUSTAINABILITY,” the Group General Manager, Corporate Planning and Strategy, NNPC, declared that the corporation is not in dire need to sell off its equities in oil companies that are in partnership with NNPC.
Responding to the suggestion that NNPC should shed it’s financial burdens in JVC commitments, she maintained that the Corporation has gained traction to efficiently partner with other oil companies in the country.
“This is the wrong time to sell our equity to any trusted partners” she said.
She pointed out that NNPC as at today is up beat with the current plan to open the $2.3 billion domestic gas market and rehabilitate the nation’s refineries.
She maintained that NNPC had decided not do it alone but to go into partnership with the private investors.
“What we have done in the upstream sector is what we are going to replicate in the downstream by going into partnership with private investors” she noted.
According to her it’s going to be seen in the rehabilitation of the old pipelines and the refineries.
“The pipelines and the refineries are open to partnership on Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) bases” she explained.
Meanwhile in his opening remark the Group Managing Director, NNPC, Kyari said that NAPE should be forward looking and proactive bearing in mind the place of oil and gas in the next 40 to 50 years.
According to him NAPE should ensure that it remain relevant in the coming years.
The NNPC boss said that there is the need to monitize the resources from the oil and gas sector as well as boost the domestic market for petroleum products.
Other panalists who participated on the online Lecture advocated for Energy Bank as a means to properly fund the oil and gas sector.
According to them given the paucity of fund post covid-19 due to fall in the oil price the panalists proposed that the 1 percent of their turnover being contributed to the National Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB) should be the take off fund for the Energy Bank.