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PIB passage faces fresh delay

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Timipre Sylva

There are fears the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) may be delayed again with the National Assembly on recess.

The Federal Government is desirous of an early passage of the revised bill already being processed for submission by the President.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, said yesterday his ministry had finished the drafting process and had submitted it to the Ministry of Justice for a review.

Sylva said if sent to the legislators, he expressed optimism that the passage process might not exceed six months, thus pushing any form of passage till 2021.

He said: “In the next few days we are hoping that the National Assembly would make time from their recess to address the bill. We hope to get the National Assembly to reconvene in the next few weeks to review the bill. We don’t think it should stay more than six months in the National Assembly.

Speaking during the Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (NAPE) Webinar Series for the August Edition, themed, “Fiscal Regime Design, Government Revenues and Investors’ Interest in Nigeria Oil & Gas Sector,” the minister said government’s finances were not in the best position to provide palliatives for the oil and gas sector, adding the fiscal framework had been addressed in the PIB to assist operators.

He explained that a draft summary included provisions that would streamline and reduce some oil and gas royalties, commercialise the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), as well as democratise the midstream sector.

A former Director, Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Osten Olorunsola, said many operators were looking at policy measures before staking interest in the sector.

He said: “A sense of urgency is needed both on the exploration side and development side to monetise the available resources in the country.

“Competitiveness is not in the fiscal phase. We need to try as much as possible to know that policies and legislation move us to become the preferred investment destination.”


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