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Why we reject single regulatory body for upstream, downstream sectors, by oil marketers, others

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The Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria (DAPPMAN) and the Organised Private Sector (OPS) have kicked against a single regulatory body for the upstream and downstream sectors of the Nigeria’s oil industry.

According to them, a single regulatory body for the two most important subsectors of the oil industry, as contained in the Petroleum Industry Government Bill (PIGB), would hamper the growth of the industry.

In the PIGB, which has been passed by the National Assembly, the Nigeria Petroleum Regulatory Commission replaces the Department of Petroleum Resources, the Petroleum Inspectorate and the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency as the sole regulator for the entire industry.

But the Executive Secretary of MOMAN, Obafemi Olawore, at a media briefing in Lagos, said that the activities of the upstream and downstream were entirely different, therefore the need to have two regulatory bodies for the subsectors.

Olawore said: “Our position is that one regulator for the industry will be too big to be very effective. It is going to be humongous and a behemoth, and may even lose shape and become amorphous.

“At the very beginning, we had only one regulator in the industry, and we found out that it was able to police the industry very well. We believe that the upstream sector is enough, not to think of bringing the troublesome downstream.  The upstream is relatively quiet, but the volume of work there is massive, so, you need a regulator that will pay attention to it.

“Our recommendation is that we want two regulators – one for the upstream and the other for the downstream.”

The Chairman, Economic Policy Committee, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Reginald Odiah, said that OPS were not consulted before the passage of the bill.

He said that the OPS should have been carried along because their machines and equipment use petrol, diesel, gas and other petroleum products.

“We were never contacted for input regarding the bill.  The bill came all of a sudden. We didn’t have enough time to look at it. Many of the critical stakeholders didn’t contribute much to it. Our position is very clear as the OPS under the chairmanship of MAN, that we are interested in having two regulatory bodies for the upstream and downstream oil and gas sectors.”

The Executive Secretary of DAPPMAN, Olufemi Adewole said that the association had recommended two regulators for the upstream and downstream at the public hearing conducted by the National Assembly, but was surprised to find out that their suggestions were not adopted.

He therefore urged the Federal Government to consider amending the bill for the growth of the downstream and upstream of the Nigeria’s oil sector.



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