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‘Nigeria Keen on Downstream Deregulation, Liberalisation’



  • ‘Nigeria Keen on Downstream Deregulation, Liberalisation’

The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has indicated that Nigeria has not given up on its intention to fully liberalise its downstream oil sector, as well as introduce price deregulation.

But the agency did not give a timeline for that to happen.

It said this amongst others were part of the country’s target in her oil and gas industry. It also gave reasons why several attempts to eliminate the uneconomical practice of flaring natural gas from oil fields in the country were not successful.

According to a presentation made recently by the Director of DPR, Mr. Mordecai Ladan, at a Technical Symposium organised in Lagos by the Society for Petroleum Engineers (SPE), Nigeria in the upstream oil sector, aspires to raise its oil reserves to 40 billion barrels; grow gas reserves to 200 trillion cubic feet (TCF) by 2020; and raise daily oil production capacity to four million barrel (mb).

In the midstream, Ladan, noted that the country would pursue a gas monetisation drive and eliminate routine flaring of gas by 2020. It would also ensure domestic gas supply sufficiency for power generation, commercial users, and other gas based industries, as well as push to achieve 50 per cent of domestic crude oil refining capacity.

In the downstream, he explained that, “full price deregulation and liberalisation; integrated petroleum products/gas distribution networks; petroleum products supply sufficiency,” would be pursued by the country.

Currently, data from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) shows the country heavily relies on imported petroleum products especially petrol to run her domestic economy.

The country also subsidises domestic petrol consumption which the World Bank had said cost her national treasury N731 billion in 2018 to maintain.

This has also led to calls on her by key local and international agencies such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to end the practice of petrol subsidy and allow for downstream market deregulation.

Also, Ladan gave reasons why the country’s attempts to eradicate flaring of natural gas at her oil fields failed in the past.

He said chief amongst the reasons were that gas was regarded as an unwanted by-product of oil and this was further amplified by the euphoria on the discovery of oil.

According to him, there was also, “unwillingness of operators to re-inject gas or utilise – no interest in conservation; poorly developed gas market and network of Infrastructure. Lack of cost-effective means of transporting gas to market.

“Quick returns on investment from oil production. Government avoiding disruption from oil revenues,” he said were also parts of the reasons for the past failures.

Despite the setbacks, Ladan however said that Nigeria has outperformed many countries in optimising associated gas for own consumption and export, but that the most viable option was the development of a flare gas-to-market solutions driven by a robust regulatory framework as contained in the Nigeria Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGFCP).

He said while there are 178 onshore and offshore gas flare sites spread across the Niger Delta, the NGFCP would upon its implementation ensure zero routine gas flaring in Nigeria by 2020; result to positive impact to communities in the Niger Delta; and monetise wasted gas resources.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.


Oil Firms Borrowed N130B From Banks in February – CBN




Operators in the downstream, natural gas and crude oil refining sectors of the Nigerian oil and gas industry borrowed N130b from Nigerian banks in February amid the significant rise in global crude oil prices.

The debt owed by the oil and gas companies rose to N4.05tn in February from N3.92bn in January, according to the latest data obtained from the Central Bank of Nigeria on Monday.

Operators in the upstream and services subsectors owed banks N1.26tn in February, down from N1.27tn a month earlier.

The combined debt of N5.31tn owed by oil and gas operators as of February 2021 represents 25.29 percent of the N21tn loans advanced to the private sector by the banks, according to the sectoral analysis by the CBN of deposit money banks’ credit.

Oil and gas firms received the biggest share of the credit from the deposit money banks to the private sector.

The slump in oil prices in 2020 as a result of the coronavirus pandemic hit many oil and gas companies hard, forcing them to slash their capital budgets and suspend some projects.

A global credit rating agency, Moody’s Investors Service, said last month that the outlook for Nigeria’s banking system remains negative, reflecting expectations of rising asset risk and weakening government support capacity over the next 12 to 18 months.

“Nigerian banks’ loan quality will weaken in 2021 as coronavirus support measures implemented by the government and central bank last year, including the loan repayment holiday, are unwound,” said Peter Mushangwe, an analyst at Moody’s.

The rating agency estimated that between 40 percent and 45 percent of banking loans were restructured in 2020, easing pressure on borrowers following the outbreak of the pandemic.

Another global credit rating agency, Fitch Ratings, had noted in a December 8 report that Nigerian bank asset quality had historically fallen with oil prices, with the oil sector representing 28 percent of loans at the end of the first half of 2020.

It said the upstream and midstream segments (nearly seven percent of gross loans) had been particularly affected by low oil prices and production cuts.

“However, the sector has performed better than expected since the start of the crisis, limiting the rise in credit losses this year due to a combination of debt relief afforded to customers, a stabilisation in oil prices, the hedging of financial exposures and the widespread restructuring of loans to the sector following the 2015 crisis,” it said.

The rating agency predicted that Nigerian bank asset quality would weaken over the next 12 to 18 months.

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Fall in Economic Activities in Nigeria Created N485.51 Billion Fiscal Deficit in January -CBN



Dollar thrive in Nigeria

The drop in economic activities in Africa’s largest economy Nigeria led to a N485.51 billion fiscal deficit in January, according to the latest data from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

In the monthly economic report released on Friday by the apex bank, the weak revenue performance in January 2021 was due to the decline in non-oil receipts following the lingering negative effects of COVID-19 pandemic on business activities and the resultant shortfall in tax revenues.

In part, the report read, “Federally collected revenue in January 2021 was N807.54bn.

“This was 4.6 per cent below the provisional budget benchmark and 12.8 per cent lower than the collection in the corresponding period of 2020.

“Oil and non-oil revenue constituted 45.4 per cent and 54.6 per cent of the total collection respectively. The modest rebound in crude oil prices in the preceding three months enhanced the contribution of oil revenue to total revenue, relative to the budget benchmark.

“Non-oil revenue sources underperformed, owing to the shortfalls in collections from VAT, corporate tax, and FGN independent revenue sources.

“Retained revenue of the Federal Government of Nigeria was lower-than-trend due to the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“At N285.26bn, FGN’s retained revenue fell short of its programmed benchmark and collections in January 2020, by 41.3 per cent and 7.5 per cent respectively.

“In contrast, the provisional aggregate expenditure of the FGN rose from N717.6bn in December 2020 to N770.77bn in the reporting period, but remained 14.4 per cent below the monthly target of N900.88bn.

“Fiscal operations of the FGN in January 2021 resulted in a tentative overall deficit of N485.51bn.”

The report noted that Nigeria’s total public debt stood at N28.03 trillion as of the end-September 2020, with domestic and external debts accounting for 56.5 percent and 43.5 percent, respectively.

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NNPC Supplies 1.44 Billion Litres of Petrol in January 2021



Petrol Importation -

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) supplied a total of 1.44 billion litres of Premium Motor Spirit popularly known as petrol in January 2021.

The corporation disclosed in its latest Monthly Financial and Operations Report (MFOR) for the month of January.

NNPC said the 1.44 billion litres translate to 46.30 million litres per day.

Also, a total of 223.55Billion Cubic Feet (BCF) of natural gas was produced in the month of January 2021, translating to an average daily production of 7,220.22 Million Standard Cubic Feet per Day (mmscfd).

The 223.55BCF gas production figure also represents a 4.79% increase over output in December 2020.

Also, the daily average natural gas supply to gas power plants increased by 2.38 percent to 836mmscfd, equivalent to power generation of 3,415MW.

For the period of January 2020 to January 2021, a total of 2,973.01BCF of gas was produced representing an average daily production of 7,585.78 mmscfd during the period.

Period-to-date Production from Joint Ventures (JVs), Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) and Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) contributed about 65.20%, 19.97 percent and 14.83 percent respectively to the total national gas production.

Out of the total gas output in January 2021, a total of 149.24BCF of gas was commercialized consisting of 44.29BCF and 104.95BCF for the domestic and export markets respectively.

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