The Director, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has warned that Nigeria’s economy would be in the doldrums if the monthly income of $2 billion is not realised to keep the nation’s fiscally sustainable. Sarki Auwalu, the Director of DPR, stated this at a DPR/ Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) strategic engagement session in Lagos.
Auwalu, during his address at the engagement session, said over 70 per cent of the $2 billion is currently being sourced through the nation’s oil and gas sector, further noting that majority of the Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) into Nigeria are attracted by the nation’s competitive oil and gas sector while stating the Department’s plans to build more oil reserves in the country.
“In the upstream sector, we want to grow the reserves to 40 billion barrels and for gas, we want to hit 230 tcf. We already have a capacity of about three million barrels per day, but we are not producing at that level and for midstream, we want to monetize the gas and we want to eliminate gas flaring,” Auwalu said.
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The DPR boss further accentuated the federal government’s plans of growing oil reserves and also increase production capacity through recovery factor by at least 5 per cent and pointed that since the establishment of the Nigeria oil and gas excellence Centre (NOGEC), Nigeria had so far received investment proposals worth $20 billion from foreign investors with a commitment to partner with companies that can prove their competence.
Immediately after the commissioning of the excellence centre, a lot of investment houses across the borders of Nigeria indicated their interest to come into Nigeria because of the transparency and predictability of the nation. As it is now, the excellence centre is to drive value through safety and enhance cost efficiency. This attracted investors and as you can see, we put a lot of emphasis on data because it is an ingredient of decision making and ingredients of investors,” he said.
On the recently concluded marginal fields bid round, Auwalu said the Department is expecting an additional 100,000 barrels to be produced by 2024 even as more modular refineries spring up across the country. “We have a refinery revolution coming up and in fact by 2025, we may have domestic refining capacity with NNPC refinery, 455,000, Dangote 650,000, BUA 200,000 and others combined, we will be talking about 2 million in the next 5 years.”
Elsewhere, Orji Ogbonnaya Orji, the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), while speaking at the event in Lagos, said his visit to the Department was expository, and adding that it has upgraded with current data and information.
Ogbonnaya said in recent times, the DPR has invested a lot in data and the NOGEC centre of the Department has authorized lots of investment while also addressing the fears and concerns of NEITI on data in terms of produced crude oil, exported, imported, management and real-time tracking of the development of the oil and gas sector.
“I think after the visit, our position and concern that we do not know how much crude oil we are producing have been substantially addressed. We raised alarm for processes to change, process lapses to be addressed and the DPR is on the verge of addressing that major gap,” he said.
“We still have lots of challenges in terms of oil theft, outright sabotage and conspiracy against the whole process. This is still a huge challenge that requires lots of cooperation to address. I hope the work that is already ongoing should be completed full time and expanded to cope with the dynamic changes in the industry,” he said.