Friday, 21 September 2012

IPMAN Explains Rationing of Petroleum Products

The Western Zone of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has explained that the ongoing rationing of fuel supply within the depots in the south western parts of the country is as a result of the vandalized pipeline at Arepo area of Ogun State. IPMAN has also condemned the recent killings of the officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) by pipeline vandals in Arepo and called on relevant authorities to stop such act of sabotage of the socio-economic development of the country.
The South-West Zonal Chairman of IPMAN, Mr Olumide Ogunmade said in a joint communiqué that the group would support the NNPC and its subsidiary, Pipelines and Products Marketing Company (PPMC) in whatever action they would take to restore pumping of products into the System 2B pipeline, which supply petroleum products to the western part of the country.

Senate Summons Diezani, NNPC Boss over fuel scarcity

The Chairman, Senate Committee, on Petroleum Resources (downstream sector) Senator Magnus Abe has invited the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke and the Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, Andrew Yakubu, to a consultative meeting over the ongoing fuel scarcity.
Expected to appear in the Senate alongside the minister and the NNPC boss, is the Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, Mr. Reginald Stanley.Other stakeholders in the petroleum downstream sector are also expected at the meeting slated for Tuesday September 25 2012 at the upper chamber of the National Assembly.
In a signed statement Friday, Senator Abe said the long queues of vehicles at filling stations seen in Abuja and some cities in the country "are unacceptable" adding that government must quickly and proactively deal with the situation. The committee, the statement added will engage those in charge with a view to ascertaining and charting a workable solutions to the challenges in the downstream sector.

Excess Crude Account: Govs Back to Supreme Court

The 36 state governors have resolved to return to the Supreme Court for adjudication on the dispute with the Federal Government over the operation of the Excess Crude Account (ECA).
If the governors get a ruling in their favour, this could stymie the operation of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), whose management board the Federal Government named last month with the appointment of Alhaji Mahey Rasheed, as chairman and Mr Uche Orji, as Managing Director/Chief Executive of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority.
The fund is meant to take off with a seed capital of $1 billion, drawn from the ECA. The governors have decided to allow the legal battle to run its full course following the failure of both parties to reach an out-of-court settlement, after a series of meetings.
In a communiqué issued at the end of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) meeting in Abuja and read to reporters by the NGF Chairman and Governor of Rivers State, Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, the governors said they would go back to the Supreme Court to compel the Federal Government to obey the constitution.

Security concerns worsen for oil firms in Libya

Expatriate oil workers in Libya are concerned about precarious security with a government struggling to impose its authority on a myriad of armed groups who refuse to lay down their weapons. The assault on the U.S. consulate and a safe house in the eastern city, in which the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans were killed, has heightened fears.
Many foreign oil firms operating in Africa's third biggest oil producer have since beefed up security measures in cities bristling with weapons and have restricted staff movements to the bare minimum.
Libya, with Africa's largest oil reserves, needs foreign investment and expertise to increase oil and gas production. Oil fields have separate, secure residential compounds and thousands of former rebel fighters guard installations.
The country is aiming to be producing 2 million barrels per day by end-2015 but delays in returning foreigners workers - specifically those working for oil services firms out in the desert fields - could derail reaching the production target.
Major oil companies operating in Libya include Italy's ENI, Germany's Wintershall, France's Total, Spain's Repsol and U.S. firms Marathon and ConocoPhillips.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

NOSDRA Amendment Act: Oil spill to attract N15bn fine

The Senate has taken the second reading of a bill to amend the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency Act, providing stiffer penalties for oil companies involved in both onshore and offshore spills.
When the bill becomes law, oil spillers will pay as high as N15bn as removal cost for spills occurring at any onshore facility, while those occurring offshore will attract a removal cost not less than N5bn. The bill also stipulates the cost per barrel of oil spilled, depending on the vessels, facilities and places where the spills occur.
A tank vessel will attract not more than N50,000 penalty per barrel of oil spilled; the fine for a vessel that is less than 3,000 gross tonnes will be N100,000 per barrel; 3,000 gross tonne vessel, N150,000 per barrel; and any other vessel, N250,000 per barrel.
The penalties are contained in four new sections (8, 9, 10 and 11) inserted as amendments in the principal Act. In addition, Section 8(9) states, “Notwithstanding the limitations established in section 8(1), all removal costs incurred by the Federal Government of Nigeria or any state, local government, person or agency in connection with a spill or substantial threat of a discharge of oil or gas from any facility or vessel carrying oil or gas cargo from such a facility shall be borne by the owner or operator of such facility or vessel.”
The sponsor of the bill, Senator Abubakar Saraki, who is also the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment, said the amendment of the NOSDRA Act of 2006 would strengthen the institution and regulatory capacity of the agency to proactively manage oil spill in a much more robust and effective manner.

FG, Shareholders rake $51bn from NLNG investment

The Federal Government and other shareholders of the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) project have earned $51 billion in revenues from the sale of liquefied natural gas in the past 13 years. Speaking when he visited the NLNG plant in Bonny Island, Rivers State, former head of state, General Yakubu Gowon (rtd.), stated that the plant also delivered $9 billion in dividends to the Federal Government and paid $10 billion to the joint venture companies during the period under review.
Gowon, who stated that the country only produced its first liquefied natural gas in 1999, after 42 years of crude oil exports, noted that the Nigeria LNG project would have earned $130 billion over the 35 years of inactivity when it was first conceptualized in the 1970s. He further disclosed that the proposed Train Seven of the NLNG would provide 10,000 construction jobs and also attract over $8 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). He urged the Federal Government and other stakeholders to commence the construction of the seventh train, adding that the NLNG, which used to be the fastest growing LNG plant in the world, should not be allowed to fail. Gowon said that with Nigeria’s 187 trillion cubic metres of proven gas reserves estimated to last for 109 years and about 600 trillion cubic metres of unproven reserves expected to last for about 300 years, the country has more than enough gas to meet its domestic and export market commitments.
 Also speaking, the Managing Director of Nigeria LNG Limited, Mr. Babs Omotowa, disclosed that the plant’s six-train facility has a capacity for 22 million metric tonnes per annum (Mtpa) of LNG and up to 5 Mtpa of natural gas liquids. He noted that the company had grown from its well-earned reputation as the world’s fastest growing LNG plant to a facility with stable production. According to him, the company sends one cargo of LNG everyday down the Bonny River to buyers all over the world, adding that the company currently accounts for eight per cent of global LNG supplies. Omotowa stated that as the single biggest contributor to government’s efforts to diversify the Nigerian economy, the company currently accounts for five per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).