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Baru Outlines Over $8bn Ongoing NNPC Financing Deals

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  • Baru Outlines Over $8bn Ongoing NNPC Financing Deals

The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Maikanti Baru, on Tuesday, reeled out the over $8bn worth of deals currently being handled and pursued by the NNPC since the beginning of 2019, as he faces retirement in a couple of days.

Baru is due for retirement on July 7 this year, as he would have attained the mandatory civil service retirement age of 60.

The NNPC boss, who delivered the keynote address at the official opening of the 2019 Nigeria Oil and Gas conference in Abuja, stated that the oil firm was involved in financing deals and had signed Memorandum of Understanding worth several billions of dollars since 2019.

He said, “This year, we have significantly progressed new third- party financings for the NNPC/SPDC JV (Shell Petroleum Development Company Joint Venture) and NNPC/MPNU JV (Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited). Both transactions were substantially over-subscribed.

“NNPC/SPDC Santolina III Project has an estimated cost of circa $500m and NNPC/MPN Satellite Field Development II Project has an estimated cost of $1.3bn (NNPC to raise circa $700m in third-party financing).”

Baru added, “Furthermore, we have initiated third-party financing for the NNPC/NAOC (Nigeria Agip Oil Company) Okpai II Independent Power Plant project, with estimated cost of circa $658.42m and the NNPC/TEPNG (Total Exploration and Production Nigeria) Ikike development project, with estimated cost of circa $473.4m to be funded through prepayment for gas by NLNG. The price balance is to flow to the Federation Account.”

He said the corporation had successfully initiated the Memorandum of Understanding (framework agreement) between NNPC and the Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas company for the provision of about $2.5bn funding for NNPC’s portion of cash call payable on upstream gas supply projects for SPDC, TEPNG and NAOC JVs.

Baru added that the NNPC had also initiated negotiations for the Financing and Technical Services Agreements for identified Nigeria Petroleum Development Company assets – OMLs 13, 65 and 111.

He said, “As you may be aware, NPDC currently contributes about eight per cent of current national daily production. Further developments from these assets and NPDC JV assets are expected to move NPDC to over 300 barrels per day equity.

“We have progressed negotiations with EPC contractors and potential Chinese lenders on the third-party financing for the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano Gas Pipeline Project of $2.89bn.”

He noted that the NNPC had also been active in the frontier basins as exploratory activities progressed from seismic data acquisition, processing and interpretation to the drilling of the Kolmani River-2 well in the Benue Trough.

Baru stated that between 2015 and 2017, the corporation was involved in various project financings of over $3bn in new investment capital.

He said, “These include the $1.2bn multi-year drilling financing package from 2015 to 2018 for 23 onshore and 13 offshore wells on OMLs 49; 90 and 95 under the NNPC/Chevron JV, termed, Project Cheetah; NNPC/SPDC JV ($1bn) – Project Santolina; NNPC/CNL JV ($780m) – Project Falcon; NNPC/First E and P JV; and Schlumberger ($700m).”

The NNPC boss, however, noted that promoting investment required stability in the regulatory framework, clarity in terms of fiscal direction and reforms, access to capital and more importantly, effective and efficient deployment of both capital and human resources.

He also told participants at the conference that Nigeria held about 2.2 per cent of global oil reserves.

Baru explained that the country’s crude oil reserves had grown steadily from about 22 billion barrels in 1999 to 37.5 billion barrels in 2018.

“Nigeria is home to the second largest crude oil reserves in Africa after Libya. Our crude oil production currently hovers around 2.2-2.3 million bocpd. This was bolstered by the coming onstream of the Egina Field in December 2018 and which has currently ramped up to 200,000bopd,” he stated.

On the gas side, he said Nigeria had the 9th largest gas reserves in the world with gas reserves of 201 trillion cubic feet and upside potential of about of 600Tcf.

He added, “It is also significant to state that out of about $194bn surge in the capital expenditure coming into upcoming oil and gas developments on the African continent from 2018 to 2025, Nigeria today accounts for $48.04bn (over 24.8 per cent) with other African countries sharing the rest.”

Baru stated that to encourage the existing players in the industry, particularly the traditional JV partners, NNPC undertook to settle all outstanding cash call arrears amounting to $5bn in 2015.

“Till date, we have defrayed over $2bn. All these efforts are geared towards sustaining investment and renewing investor confidence,” he said.

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

Economy

India, Spain, the Netherlands, USA, Nigeria’s Major Export Markets -NBS

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India, Spain and the Netherland top Nigeria’s export markets in the final quarter of 2020, according to the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

The Commodity Price Indices and Terms of Trade Q4 2020 report showed that the United States and China trailed the three.

However, the NBS revealed Nigeria exports mainly crude oil and natural gas during the period under review.

It, “The major export and import market of Nigeria in Q4 2020 were India, Spain, the Netherlands, United States and China.

“The major export to these countries were crude petroleum and natural gas. The major imports from the countries were motor spirits, used vehicles, motorcycles and antibiotics.”

The bureau stated that the all-commodity group import index increased by 0.13 per cent between October and December 2020.

This was driven mainly by an increase in the prices of base metals and articles of base metals (one per cent), boilers, machinery and appliances; parts thereof (1.03 per cent), and products of the chemical and allied industries (0.75 per cent),” it stated.

The NBS, however, noted that the index was negatively affected by animal and vegetable fats and oils and other cleavage products.

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Economy

Onyeama: Qatar To Invest $5bn In Nigeria’s Economy

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The oil-rich state of Qatar is to invest a total of $5 billion in Nigeria’s economy, the Foreign Affairs Minister, Godfrey Onyeama, has disclosed.

Onyeama, who spoke Sunday at a send forth dinner in honour of Nigeria’s Ambassador-designate to the State of Qatar, who is also the outgoing Director of Protocol (DOP) at the State House, Ambassador Yakubu Ahmed, also stated that recent career ambassadorial appointments made by the gederal government was based on merit, experience and professionalism.

The minister further said there had been discussions with Qatar on partnership with Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), for significant investments in the region of $5 billion in the Nigerian economy.

According to him, ‘‘Qatar is a weighty and strategic country and very strategic in that part of the world and we are putting our best feet forward to advance the interest of our country economically and in other areas.”

He recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had visited the State of Qatar in 2016 and the Emir of Qatar, Tamim Bin Hammad Al-Thani, reciprocated with a State visit in 2019.

Onyeama also explained that only trusted hands with a track record of diligence, experience and professionalism in the Foreign Service were recently appointed career ambassadors by the federal government.

The minister said the appointment of Ahmed and other career ambassadors were predicated on posting dedicated and keen Foreign Service practitioners to serve as image makers of the country.

He said: ‘‘Ambassador Yakubu Ahmed is a dedicated professional with a penchant for rigour and detail. He is very capable and one of the best in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is personable, affable, extremely friendly, dispassionate and objective.

‘‘He is going to head a very important mission, a very important country, reckoned to be one of the richest countries in the world, per capita, and there’s a lot we will be doing with the State of Qatar.”

Also speaking, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Adeola Rahman Ipaye, described the honoree as a ‘‘perfect gentleman, very even-natured and always well turned out’’.

Ipaye said he had no doubt that the newly appointed ambassador would serve the country well in Qatar, adding that: ‘‘We are further encouraged that when he completes this assignment, he would return to serve Nigeria in a higher capacity.’’

In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, State House, Tijjani Umar, while congratulating the outgoing DOP on his appointment, lauded Ahmed for excellent service to the State House and the nation.

‘‘He served this institution and the nation with the deepest sense of responsibility and it is very important that we establish a tradition where the system appreciates those who have served it well and those who will continue to serve it well,’’ he said.

Umar urged the new envoy to keep very fond memories of his time at the Presidential Villa, assuring him of the prayers and goodwill of all the staff.

Responding, Ahmed thanked President Buhari for the great honour and privilege of making him his principal representative in Doha, Qatar.

The Ambassador-designate pledged to deplore his energy and skill to the promotion of the existing cordial relationship between Nigeria and Qatar, particularly in the areas of economic, political, cultural and consular affairs as well as other key areas.

Ahmed, who joined Nigeria’s Foreign Service in 1993, said during his years in public service he had learnt that ‘‘patriotism, selfless service, diligence, determination and perseverance will always result in the achievement of the desired objective’’.

According to him, these virtues would be his ‘‘watchword’’ in the pursuit of Nigeria’s foreign policy objectives and the attainment of national interests.

The Ambassador-designate singled out for appreciation the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, and the state Chief of Protocol, Ambassador Lawal Kazaure, saying he had learnt a lot working under their mentorship.

He expressed gratitude to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Permanent Secretary, State House for giving him the opportunity of a memorable work experience in the State House.

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Economy

France, Nigeria to Build New Partnership

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France is currently aiming at building a new partnership with Nigeria, with the dispatching of its Minister in charge of Foreign Trade and Attractiveness, Franck Riester, to Nigeria.

Riester, who was expected at the time of filing this report on Monday, is scheduled to visit Nigeria from 12-14 April, 2021.

A statement from the French Embassy in Nigeria said: “Franck Riester is visiting Nigeria from 12 to 14 April, a visit that follows up on the priorities set by French President Emmanuel Macron during his official visit to Nigeria in July 2018 and his desire to build a new partnership between Africa and France.

“As the largest economy in Africa and the economic engine of West Africa, Nigeria is indeed a major partner for France, the first in sub-Saharan Africa with bilateral trade amounting to a total of 4.5 billion USD in 2019 (2.3 billion USD in 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic).”

It disclosed that the minister will have several official meetings in Abuja and Lagos, in order to underline the importance of the bilateral economic relationship and to prepare the summit on the financing of African economies in Paris on 18 May.

It revealed that the objective of the mission is also to further strengthen the links between the French and Nigerian private sectors, and “in this regard, the minister will have in-depth discussions with the main Nigerian economic actors to strengthen bilateral cooperation and investments, both in Nigeria and in France, particularly in the logistics sector”.

It said while in the country, the minister would meet with young Nigerian entrepreneurs in the cultural and creative industries sector, to discuss the major role of their country in African creativity and the development of the African entrepreneurial ecosystem, with the support of France.

It further said: “The minister will also open the ‘Choose Africa’ conference, a €3.5 billion initiative by President Emmanuel Macron dedicated to supporting the development of start-ups and SMEs in Africa to enable the continent to benefit fully from the opportunities of the digital revolution.”

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