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Fuel Subsidy: Full Deregulation Yet To Commence- Jonathan

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President Goodluck Joanthan last week inaugurated the governing board of the subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE) led by the former Nigerian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom (UK), Dr. Christopher Kolade with an explanation that a template that could lead to a full-blown deregulation is yet to be implemented by the federal government.

He assured that his government would deliver on its promises and programmes aimed at transforming the nation.

According to him, the SURE programme was designed for total deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector, admitting that there was a high level of destruct by the public of the government fulfilling its promises.

The President assured that his administration would not fail Nigerians, adding that even with the partial deregulation or an increase in pump price of petrol, his government would still go ahead to reinvest the proceeds for the benefits of the people.

His words: “What we have now is an increase in pump price and not total deregulation, but we have to show that we are committed to delivering on our promises”, the pedigree of members of the board.

Appealing to Nigerians to cooperate with the board members as the move across the country to oversee the implementation of projects and programmes of SURE, Jonathan noted that government recognised that funding was a major impediment to employment creation.

He disclosed that government had set aside some portion of the partial subsidy removal proceeds to support employment generation nationwide, pointing out that his administration views the prevailing high rate of unemployment among the youths with great concern, especially with the rising rate of youth militancy, violence and other social vices inimical to the political and economic stability of the nation.

To create employment for up to 370,000, women and youths in 3 states of the federation and the federal capital Territory and reduce the vulnerability of women and youths through exposure to income – generating opportunities among others are the benefits to be derived from the deregulation.

Speaking on behalf of the board, Kolade assured that they would serve with integrity, probity, transparency and accountability.

President Jonathan had announced the establishment of the SURE on January 2 after his government announced the removal of petrol subsidy on December 31, 2011.

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Oil & Energy

DPR Assures Fuel Availability During Sallah

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The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has assured Nigerians of petroleum products availability during the Sallah holidays.
Head, Public Affairs, DPR, Mr Paul Osu, gave the assurance in a statement issued last Friday in Lagos.
The Tide source reports that the Federal Government has declared July 20 and 21 as public holidays to mark the celebration.
Osu said there was product sufficiency nationwide and advised marketers against hoarding and creating artificial scarcity under any guise.
He said the DPR would intensify its monitoring and surveillance of petroleum products outlets to ensure compliance with quality, quantity, integrity and safety of operations in line with its regulatory mandate.
Osu advised consumers to report any infraction such as under dispensing of products to any DPR office nationwide.
He also reiterated the DPR’s commitment to safety and advised consumers to observe all necessary safety protocols in the handling of petroleum products.
Osu said the regulatory agency would continue to initiate appropriate initiatives to enable business and create opportunities for investors and stakeholders in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria.

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Oil & Energy

Reps Pass PIB, Adopt 3% For Host Communities

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Following the report of the conference Committee on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), the House of Representatives last Friday, in Abuja passed the bill, allowing three per cent to host communities.
The three per cent is however against 10 per cent demanded by the host communities and also the initial five per cent agreed to by the House of Reps.
The PIB is an Executive bill, which sought to reform the Oil and Gas sector and ensure its governance met with best global standards.
It was presented by the Chairman of House Committee on PIB, Rep. Mohammed Monguno (APC-Borno) on July 1.
The bill was scheduled for third reading and final passage by the House following the adoption of the report by the House, which was eventually passed on July 16.
The Tide source reports that the main opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) could not participate in the adoption following their walk out from the plenary.
It would be recalled that the host communities had earlier demanded for 10 per cent, the Chairman of the House Committee on PIB however accepted five per cent in its report.
The conference Committee of the House of Reps and the Senate jointly agreed to give three per cent to the host communities via harmonisation.

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Oil & Energy

Sylva Affirms Oil, OPEC’s Place In Future Energy Mix

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Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, has said oil will not lose its place in the future energy mix, adding that OPEC itself would continue to be a force to be reckoned with in the sector.
He made the statement while announcing the launch of a book, “Nigeria and OPEC : 50 years of Partnership” by the federal government in celebration of the country’s golden jubilee anniversary as member of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
“Oil will continue to be an important component of the energy mix into the foreseeable future. It will continue to be needed to power the global economic growth in order to eradicate poverty, which is still prevalent worldwide.
“OPEC’s role of stabilising the oil market for the benefits of all stakeholders will continue to be required in the years ahead,” Syvla added.
Nigeria was admitted into OPEC as its 11th member country on July 12, 1971, at the 24th meeting of the OPEC held in Vienna, Austria.
“OPEC at the time was in its 11th year of existence having being established on September 14 1960, in Baghdad, Iraq, by five founding member countries Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.
“This makes July 12, 2021, the golden anniversary of a successful partnership between Nigeria and OPEC.
“As part of this celebration, it is my pleasure to launch the book ‘Nigeria and OPEC: 50 years of Partnership, 1971-2021,” he said.
He said the book was an updated version of the one published in 2006 to mark the 35th anniversary.
According to him, it is a very important document that can adequately inform and inspire the future generation.
“The book gave great insights into our people, culture, diversity and relationship with OPEC over these 50 eventful years
“It also gives an insight into the landmark developments in the oil and gas sectors as well as their envisaged place in Nigeria’s energy transition commitments,’’ he said
The minister said that Nigeria as a key player in the industry would continue to lend full support to the efforts of the organisation to balance the oil market for the benefit of all.
He said Nigeria’s membership of OPEC was very important and had helped in strengthening shared values and protecting the group’s interest.
Commenting on the role of Nigeria in OPEC, he said that it had contributed enormously to the survival of OPEC during turbulent times by lending full support to the efforts of the organisation to balance and stabilise the oil market.
He quoted the OPEC Secretary General, Mohammad Barkindo, as saying that the organisation had benefited from the wisdom and expertise of dedicated public servants from Nigeria who had engaged with the organisation in different period.
“Nigeria has played a major role in driving the organisation focus on cooperation , goodwill, a sense of belonging and unity and in working toward achieving oil market stability,’’ he quoted Barkindo as saying.
Sylva further said that over the past 50 years Nigeria had produced six presidents of the OPEC conference.
He named the presidents to include Shettima Ali Monguno (1972/73), Malam Yahaya Dikko (1982/83), Dr Rilwanu Lukman (1986- 89, 2002), Prof. Jibril Aminu (1991), Dr Edmund Daukoru (2006) and Dr Ibe Kachikwu (2015).
“They have in total, presided over 26 OPEC ministerial conferences held in several countries
“It is appropriate and important to mention that our president Muhammadu Buhari also served as head of Nigeria delegation to OPEC from 1976 to 1978 and has continued to engage with the organisation, lending his unflinching support to OPEC laudable endavours.
“It is on record that he played a crucial role in negotiating the Declaration of Cooperation (DoC) between OPEC and participating non-OPEC oil producing countries which has continued to be backbone for the survival of the oil industry during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic,’’ he said .
The minister added that Nigeria had also provided four OPEC Secretary Generals namely Chief MO Feyide 1975/1976, Dr Rilwanu Lukman (1986/88), Dr Edmund Daukoru (2006) and the incumbent Mohammad Barkindo.
“This amounts to a total of 15 years of managing the affairs of the secretariat on behalf of the members. Nigeria , has therefore played a vital role in the evolution of the secretariat and the development of the organisation,’’ he said

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