FG earned $34.22bn from oil sales, lost $2.77bn to thieves – NEITI

As Nigeria’s oil industry bleeds in the face of insecurity, a latest report has exposed the consequences of various types of infraction in the industry revealing a monumental loss of $2.77 billion revenue loss.

The money was computed from 42.25 million barrels of crude volume loss in 2019, according to the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).

The startling revelations were contained in NEITI’s Oil and Gas audit report that was presented to the Media and civil society organisations by Mr George Abiye, Assistant Director, Oil and Gas, NEITI on Tuesday in Lagos.

The report showed Nigeria earned 34.22 billion dollars from the oil and gas sector in 2019, a 4.88 per cent increase over the 32.63 billion dollars realised in 2018.

The 2019 report covered 98 entities, including 88 oil and gas companies, nine government agencies and the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Company.

It said the country could have earned more revenue if not for crude oil losses due to metering error, theft and sabotage in the year under review.

The report, however, noted that the loss was 11.03 (21 per cent) lower than that recorded in 2018, which was 53.28 million barrels.

It urged the NNPC to update its pipeline networks to minimize vandalism and crude oil theft.

The report also advised the Federal Government to ensure the success of oil and gas industrial parks in the Niger Delta.

“This will ensure the development of oil and gas infrastructure in the oil-producing states.

“It will create employment for the populace in the Niger Delta,” the report added.

Earlier in his remarks, Executive Secretary, NEITI, Dr Ogbonnaya Orji, commended the National Assembly for the recent passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) after several years of delay.

Orji advised the lawmakers to urgently harmonise the draft bill and present it for consideration and assent by President Muhammadu Buhari.