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‘High Electricity Tariff Frustrating e-Commerce Growth’

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Operators of e-com
merce companies have cried out over the negative effect of high electricity tariff, describing it as a disincentive to business development in the country.
A survey conducted by the Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) shows that less than 40 per cent of electricity bills are paid by consumers and that as a result higher tariffs are expected to be levied in a bid to plug the loss in power revenue.
The stakeholders stated that with a recession poised to sweep through the economy, an unstable currency washing out capital security and epileptic power supply, forcing a dependence on generators, the hike in electricity tariffs will limit industry growth.
The managing Director of Jovago Nigeria, Mr Kushal Dutta, said, “one of the highest cost e-commerce companies in Nigeria cover is electricity. As online-based businesses need constant power supply to function and deliver services to clients, we spend a bulk of our revenue which should go into increasing operations on buying diesel for generators that run almost 24 hours a day.
“Although we predict better market opportunities for the sector, there is need to curb this inflation in tariff pricing so investing companies can begin to thrive and achieve real growth,” Dutta said.
While consumers of power bemoan the instability and high cost of sourcing electricity, the Executive Director, ANED, Sunday Oduntan, said that the high charges were dismissible in view of the low payment habits of Nigerians.
Oduntan said consumer pay less than 40 percent of their actual bills from recording by distribution companies.
“I ‘ve toured all the 11 DISCOs and I see the same pattern across board in terms of our peoples’ attitude with respect to N5,000 and they will pay N2,000 and will tell you they will clear in next time. This is how it continues to pile up.”
With the government removing fuel subsidies and oil marketers refusing to sell diesel at pump princes, the cost of doing business in Nigeria is expected to double over the next three months especially as oil hits a bench mark price of $ 38 per barrel with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicting a further drop to $ 20 per barrel by mid-year.

 

Chris  Oluoh

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Oil & Energy

‘NNPC Has Violated Its Own Guidelines, Reporting Production Shut-Ins As Losses’

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Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has violated its own guidelines, reporting production shut-ins as losses.
The violation is contained in the Corporation’s latest monthly report for January obtained by SweetcrudeReports, adding also, that six million barrels of oil production had been deferred following the shutdowns of the export terminals between November and December 2021.
The shut-ins termed losses by NNPC had led to Nigeria’s inability to export over 6 million barrels of crude oil, according to NNPC.
In the past, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation had severally admonished reporters to stop reporting shut-ins as losses, however, the Corporation appears to have also fallen foul of same misrepresentation it had flagged.
For instance, while detailing some of its key challenges in the January 2021 report, the Corporation disclosed that 10 crude oil terminals were shut down within two months as a result of either leaks, fire, or for maintenance purposes.
The January 2021 report went ahead to tag the inability to export crude through those channels as “loss” instead of shut-ins.
In the past the Corporation had admonished journalists not to report crude oil shut-in as a loss because when such production comes back on stream, the same would be exported and revenue obtained.
The Corporation had put the supposed loss at the export terminals (Batan flow station at Forcados, Opuama flow stations at Trans Escravos pipeline, Abo terminal, Agbami terminal, Brass and Erha terminals, Ugo Ocha terminal at Odidi flow station, Jone Creek FS, Yoho terminal, Usan and Ima terminal, Qua Iboe terminal, Okono and Escravos terminal, and Escravos Dubri terminal) at over 6 million barrels within the said months.
Nigeria has 26 export terminals scattered across the country with 10 located in the Western zone, 11 in the Eastern zone, and 5 in the Lagos zone.
A breakdown of the “losses” as reported by the NNPC, showed that the Batan flow station at Forcados terminal was shut down on the 18th of November 2020, and for 31 days in December due to protest by the community over outstanding payments. Also, the Opuama flow stations were shut down due to reported leaks on 20’’ Trans Escravos Pipeline on December 1. Cumulative “loss “ over 31days in December was 359,200bbls.
At the Abo terminal, production shut down for maintenance took place on the 7th of December 2020 for 13 days. Another shutdown occurred on December 20 for 6 days. Cumulative “loss” for the period was put at 360,000bbls.
Production curtailed for flare management for GTC no.3 first stage discharge cooler repairs and planned maintenance at the Agbami terminal on 24th and 11th November respectively resulted in an aggregate “loss” of 294,414bbls.

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NNPC Tasks Investors On Refineries

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has tasked investors on the construction of greenfield condensate refineries, in order to meets the country’s aspiration towards becoming net exporter of petroleum products.
The Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari, gave the charge at the ongoing virtual bi-annual Nigerian Oil anc Gas Opportunity Fair, NOGOF 2021, with the theme ‘Leveraging Opportunities and Synergies for Post Pandemic Recovery of The Nigerian Oil & Gas Industry’.
Kyari reiterated the NNPC’s willingness to partner with investors towards value creation and a fair share of Return on Investment in the exploration of frontier basins, development of upstream gas fields and financing of greenfield/brownfield additional production on de-risked assets.
He assured that the country’s oil and gas sector is replete with opportunities, particularly in gas and power infrastructure development, gas pipeline networks expansion, development of gas based industries as well as the Integrated Power Plants.
Other areas of opportunities he said, include the rehabilitation of existing refineries, as well as construction of LPG and CNG plants across the country, pipelines and storage tank construction as well as developing shipping capacity.
“In the Upstream, opportunities abound in the area of exploration of frontier basins, the development of upstream gas fields and the financing of greenfield/brownfield additional production on de-risked assets.
“In Gas and Power infrastructure development, there are opportunities in expanding our Gas Pipeline networks, development of Gas based industries as well as the Integrated Power Plants.
“In line with our aspiration towards becoming net exporter of petroleum products, opportunities abound in the rehabilitation of our existing refineries as well as the construction of greenfield condensate refineries.
“As we strive to deepen domestic gas utiliisation, it has created more opportunities in the downstream sector especially in LPG and CNG plants across the country. There are also opportunities in the pipeline and storage tank construction; as well as developing Shipping Capacity.
“In the Ventures & Business Development, we are ready to partner investors in the development of multi-specialist hospitals to strengthen healthcare service availability and support telecommunication infrastructure availability.
“Finally, let me once again re-assure you that at NNPC, we are ready to collaborate with investors towards turning opportunities into real value, for the benefit of all, and especially towards taking our Industry to even greater heights.”
The NNPC boss further reiterated the corporation’s support and full alignment with NCDMB in its quest to engage Industry professionals, towards achieving its primary mandate of building and supporting the development of local capacities and capabilities in the industry.
Also, the pioneer Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Ernest Nwapa, noted that the oil and gas industry had experienced remarkable and sustainable growth in the last 15 years through local content and no other sector in the Nigerian economy had recorded comparable development.

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Former Adviser Advocates Investment In ICT For Oil, Gas Sector Revolution

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Amid daunting challenges plaguing Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, an industry expert and former Technical Adviser to the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Engr. Rabiu Suleiman has called for higher investments in Information Communications Technology, ICT to fully harness the huge economic potential the petroleum sector holds.
He said ICT plays a significant role in optimisation, efficiency, technology advancement in the oil and gas sector.
“I believe it is time for the oil and gas industry to embrace more ICT. There are new ICT innovations coming up to help tackle most of the challenges faced in the industry. I know Huawei Technologies has been coming up with some new solutions for the petroleum industry.
“ICT is also useful for data management. The oil & gas industry handles lots of information and a lot of it has been paperwork. There is therefore a need for digital transformation to foster efficiency in the way information is stored using ICT.
“The most sensitive equipment in the process plants in the oil and gas industry is the programmable logic controllers, online analysers and all other instrument that control process, temperature, flows and pressure. So, if a company such as Huawei focuses attention on optimisation, efficiency, control and improvement, maximisation of production it will be very good”, he said.
He further explained that ICT has proven useful across other industries, adding that Nigeria can achieve up to 5 percent more oil productivity and at reduced cost using ICT.
“Regarding oil exploration, it is now possible to achieve up to 5% more oil productivity at areduced cost of investment using ICT. There are now ICT solutions that make oil extraction easier at a lower price than what it used to be.
“The major challenge today is that of insecurity. Other challenges include; general economic recession, the recent COVID-19 pandemic that almost grounded the entire world economy. Many countries passed through recession, there was the lowering of oil reserves because production was halted in some countries and therefore, production became low and of course, there are other challenges related to high production cost. If you narrow down and do a comparative analysis between Nigeria and other countries, cost of production per barrel in Nigeria is significantly very high. It went as high as $32 per barrel and crude oil price at the international market went as low as $9/barrel. But quickly, it went up to $140/barrel later and then crashed to below zero by COVID-19.”
He explained that the 2021 edition of the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit, NIPS, which starts on the 6th of June, 2021 in Abuja, provides a great opportunity at this critical time for the Oil & Gas sector in Nigeria, to focus on how to leverage ICT to transform the sector and the economy at large.
“You can easily integrate various ICT components in terms of monitoring of volume flows, temperature, attack, corrosion, contamination, communication, you can tie all these to a dedicated command and control centre. With Huawei’s oil & gas solutions, it is possible to manage pipeline damages. Yes, this has been a major challenge over the years which has greatly affected the economy.
However, there are no ICT solutions to manage these occurrences. It is now possible to track the pipelines and keep them safe through technology. With this in place, more revenue can be generated”.
He also spoke on the need for quick energy transition to renewables like solar, hydro and wind, to safeguard the environment.
“Nigeria is abundantly blessed with renewable energy sources. Sunlight is in abundant, from here in Abuja to the far north. It can be captured and converted into solar system. The main engine for growth is to have uninterrupted power supply. We also have many solar power projects going on. There is 100 megawatts of solar power that I initiated in Kano State. We have many others going on in other parts of the country. We small power panels that you can throw unto the roofs in villages.”
He thus challenged Huawei Technologies to widen its green energy solution provision, especially in solar power for Nigerians.
“Look at the three Nigerian refineries, none of them is producing aviation kerosene, why? Because of the ingress of water into the system and the inability of the laboratory to detect moisture content and poor knowledge of operators who are reluctant to apply new technologies because they are afraid to carry out certain decisions”.

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