The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Nigeria’s state-owned oil company, will cease to provide free services to the federal government of Nigeria after it is completely commercialized in a few months, Mele Kyari, group managing director of the corporation said in a monitored interview.
Kyari noted that all services rendered to the government, including remittance of federation crude account funds to the planned upstream commission will attract a cost, adding that NNPC will cease to depend on government funds but rely on its internal resilience and efficiency for survival after it is fully incorporated.
Recalling that the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), recently signed by President Muhammadu Buhari allows the full incorporation of the national oil company as a publicly quoted company within six months, he pointed out that the major focus of the corporation has shifted to profit making
“It means that NNPC will have no access to any other results, other than from its own production and productivity. So, that means that NNPC will be the different company that it has to be.
“Even when it renders service to anyone, including the institutions of government, it must be at a fee and the PIA is very clear that even when we render service to the state, it would be at a fee. Hence, it’s going to be a different game,” he stated.
Kyari also highlighted that the oil and gas company, having recently declared N287 billion profit, including the assets available to it, is in good terms to transform into a business organisation with high yields as it will operate in a competitive environment with the aim of making profits.
He stated that NNPC decided to be more transparent in its operations because of the perception of Nigerians that the company operates in a very opaque environment, stressing that even for its lenders, the condition of accountability remains sacrosanct.
He said, “We know for sure that historically many people have doubts about what NNPC does. Our shareholders think that we are an opaque company, that we are not representing them well, and that we don’t know what we are doing and I am sure many times you see us in the media, in the public space, in very many forums, everybody thinks that nobody knows what NNPC is doing.
“We know that trust is very essential for our business. We also know that our partners, financial institutions, and even commercial partners would like to see and know what we are doing, so they can invest in our company.
“We know that making transparency and accountability a primary focus of our activities will serve the best interests and will also enable our partners to see what we are doing and make borrowing easier for us,” Kyari further explained.
Speaking on Nigeria’s gas expansion programme, however, he stated that the COVID-19 has spelt that gas can be more resilient than oil, though the country is yet to invest enough in the area.
Kyari added that gas monetization, both domestically, for export and massive investment in gas infrastructure, will take the front burner to creating prosperity and jobs for Nigerians as he also disclosed the bigger plan of developing white structure for gas delivery in the country.