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LCCI, NACCIMA, Others Back Atiku on NNPC Privatisation



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  • LCCI, NACCIMA, Others Back Atiku on NNPC Privatisation

The Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Muda Yusuf; National Vice-President, Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, Remi Bello; and a former President of the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria, Dr. Sam Nzekwe, have supported the position of the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Abubakar Atiku, that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation be privatised.

Last week Wednesday, Atiku declared that he would privatise the NNPC if elected, describing the corporation as a mafia-organisation.

Commenting on the development, the LCCI DG said the presidential candidate’s position was the way to go if the NNPC must perform optimally as an oil firm.

Yusuf said, “His (Atiku) position is consistent with the current reforms that are being negotiated. And I think it is consistent even with the Petroleum Industry Bill because the whole idea of that bill is to disengage as much as possible the government from the control and management of the oil and gas industry.

“The government should be restricted to the regulatory aspect of the business and not getting directly involved. That’s my sense of what the reform is all about and that’s my sense of what the PIB is also all about. So what he (Atiku) has said is not so much different from the reforms that are being contemplated by stakeholders.”

He added, “And I believe that that is the way to go. We can have a model where the government will not actually sell all the shares but can retain some, just like the NLNG (Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas) model where the government has 49 per cent and the private sector has 51 per cent.

“The NLNG is being managed by the private sector and you can see the kind of success we are getting from that company. The government is making billions of dollars in terms of dividend and on top of that NLNG is paying a lot of tax also in foreign exchange.”

Also, in his response on whether it was okay for the NNPC to be sold to private investors, the vice-president of NACCIMA stated that the privatisation of the oil firm was the right thing to do presently.

Bello said “I don’t think there should an objection as to whether the NNPC should be privatised. We cannot be talking from the two sides of our mouths because if we believe the saying that the government has no business to be in business then NNPC is the kind of business, that shouldn’t be a public asset.

“So, yes, I think it is the way to go and the corporation should be privatised. Once due diligence is followed and act of corruption is removed, then, of course, that’s the way to go.”

Nzekwe, on his part, stated that the privatisation of the national oil firm was long overdue, but stressed that it must not be sold to the wrong investors in order to avoid the kind of concerns currently faced in the power sector.

He said, “That is what we need right now because there is a lack of transparency at the NNPC. People don’t know what they are doing there. But my concern is that to whom are you going to sell the corporation to? This is because it may end up in the hands of those few Nigerians who will still make it not to work.

“They may buy it at very cheap rates and can’t revamp it as required. However, my opinion is that it be sold in form of shares where an average Nigerian can own some stake in the corporation, instead of selling it to the privileged few and they run it just like what we are seeing now in the power sector.”

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Nasdaq,, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Nigeria’s Q3 Foreign Trade Skyrockets: Crude Oil Revenue Surges by 83.23% to N8.54tn



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Nigeria’s foreign trade expanded by 53.16% year-on-year to N18.80 trillion in the third quarter (Q3) of 2023.

The surge was primarily propelled by an impressive 83.23% spike in crude oil revenue to N8.54 trillion, a substantial increase from N4.66 trillion recorded in the same quarter of the previous year.

This was reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its ‘Foreign Trade in Goods Statistics (Q3 2023)’ that highlighted the nation’s trade balance and economic outlook.

The report noted that total exports rose by 60.78% to N10.35 trillion.

Mr. Gbenga Komolafe, CEO of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, emphasized the importance of viability in retaining exploration leases.

He said, “Based on PIA (Petroleum Industry Act), the commission is focused on delivering value for the nation so only firms that are technically and financially viable will keep their leases.”

The report outlined the dominance of crude oil in exports, constituting 82.50% of total exports, while non-crude oil products contributed N677.57 billion or 6.55% of total exports. The positive trade balance stood at N1.89 trillion.

The top five export destinations for Nigeria included Spain, India, The Netherlands, Indonesia, and France, collectively accounting for 45.98% of total export value.

On the import side, China, Belgium, India, Malta, and the United States were the major sources, comprising 57.18% of total imports, valued at N4.84 trillion.

While these promising trade figures indicate a robust economic performance, challenges in the oil sector persist, with the country’s crude oil production below the 2023 target.

The government’s commitment to increasing production aims to boost revenue and fund strategic national projects, as highlighted by Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Heineken Lokpobiri.

The surge in exports, possibly linked to the recent naira devaluation, underscores the intricate relationship between economic policies and trade dynamics, shaping Nigeria’s economic trajectory.

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Federal Government to Earn Over $500 Million in INTELS Deal



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The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has unveiled an agreement with INTELS Nigeria Limited that is set to bring substantial financial gains to the federal government.

The comprehensive deal, negotiated over weeks, not only resolves a contentious pilotage contract but also promises to bolster Nigeria’s coffers by over $500 million.

The accord encompasses a multifaceted approach to financial benefits, including an interest waiver of $193,317,556 and a significant reduction in the interest rate on outstanding debt.

The debt, originally at a six-month London Interbank Offer Rate (LIBOR) + 6.5%, has been revised to a more favorable six months Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) + 3%.

Such financial restructuring is anticipated to save the government a staggering $326.8 million over the next 15 years.

NPA, in a detailed breakdown, elucidated that the agreement further involves spreading the debt repayment over 15 years, with the initial two years being interest-free.

Additionally, there is a commendable reduction in the commission percentage, dropping from 28% to 24.5%, a move that aligns with the government’s commitment to optimizing financial resources.

The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola, received accolades for his tireless efforts in steering the negotiations to a successful conclusion. NPA expressed gratitude for his commitment to putting Nigeria first, emphasizing the critical role played by the minister in resolving the long-standing INTELS dispute.

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, however, denied benefiting from the reinstatement of INTELS contracts.

He clarified that his divestment from the company remains unchanged, emphasizing that he cannot be a beneficiary of the restored pilotage monitoring business.

NPA’s move to ensure a resolution with INTELS is not only seen as a financial triumph but also as a strategic step towards fostering economic stability.

The agreement is poised to have a positive ripple effect on revenue generation and underscores the government’s commitment to diplomatic and economically viable solutions.

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Nigeria’s Refinery Output Plummets by 92% in a Decade



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Nigeria’s local refineries recorded a 92% decline in output over the past decade, according to the Statistical Review of the World Energy 2023 report.

The data unveils a drastic drop in refining capacity, plummeting from 92,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2012 to a mere 6,000 bpd in 2022.

This disconcerting revelation is echoed in the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC) Annual Statistical Bulletin 2023, which underscores an 81% reduction in Nigeria’s crude oil refining capacity, falling from 33,000 bpd in 2018 to 6,000 bpd in 2022.

Despite owning four government-owned refineries, located in Port Harcourt, Warri, and Kaduna, with a collective capacity of around 4.45 million bpd, Nigeria continues to heavily rely on importing refined petroleum products.

This dependency raises questions about the nation’s resilience and self-sufficiency in the energy sector.

Minister of State for Petroleum, Heineken Lokpobiri, had previously announced plans for the Port Harcourt refinery to commence operations by the end of the current year, with the Warri and Kaduna refineries expected to follow suit in early 2024.

This revelation comes amid rising concerns over Nigeria’s continued reliance on importing refined petroleum products, even with substantial investments in refinery infrastructure.

The decline in local refining exacerbates the challenge, leading to soaring petrol prices and a strain on the nation’s economic landscape.

Industry experts stress the urgency of revitalizing local refineries, emphasizing that dependence on imports is neither sustainable nor conducive to the country’s economic well-being.

As Nigeria grapples with the complexities of its energy dynamics, the impending revival of local refineries stands out as a crucial solution to navigate these challenging times.

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