Vandals shrink oil revenue as reserves hit 37.046b barrels
The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has said that the country’s crude oil reserves has moved up by 0.37 per cent to 37.046 billion barrels.
There are also indications that activities of oil vandals drastically reduced the country’s earnings from royalties and other revenues from the sector, NUPRC said in Abuja, without providing the exact value of losses or the revenue raised in the past six months.
At a media engagement, yesterday, in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Chairman of NUPRC, Gbenga Komolafe, said analysis of figure from 2021 yearly report on reserves provided by 61 oil and gas companies, showed that as at January this year, Nigeria’s crude oil reserves improved by 0.37 per cent from the 36.910 billion barrels of January 2021, while national gas reserves moved to 208.62 trillion cubic feet (TCF) as last January.
Coming six months after the institution of NUPRC with the passage of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), the increase in gas reserves represent 1.01 per cent compared to 206.53 TCF as at January 2021.
There were attempts to increase the country’s crude reserves, which stood at 38 billion barrels. But it has been declining steadily in the past five years due to a combination of factors.
Previously, the Federal Government had said it would increase the reserves to 40 billion barrels, but failed. The country later targeted 2023 and lately targeted 2025 to increase oil reserves to 40 billion barrels and crude oil production to three million barrels per day.
Komolafe, while providing updates on what the commission has achieved in the past six months, stated that “massive campaign dedicated to the identification of oil and gas wells producing below capacity is on to improve crude oil output,” while noting that holistic approach was being deployed towards increasing crude oil and gas reserves from 37 billion barrels and 208.62 TCF.
According to him, the Federal Government is at the verge of awarding licences under the Nigerian Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGFCP), in an attempt to increase government’s revenue and end gas flaring.
Advanced cargo declaration has been approved in upstream petroleum operations to curtail export of stolen crude by ensuring that Crude Oil and Gas cargoes exported from Nigeria would have a unique identity that confirms all documentation as regards the exported consignment, he added.
“This implies that any cargo that does not have the unique identifier was not legitimately exported from the country.
“In line with its statutory duties as regulator, the commission obtained necessary approvals to ensure installation of metering equipment (Lease Automatic Custody Transfer Units) in the upstream petroleum industry using Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to avert potential manipulation of figures that could result in shortchanging the oil and gas federation revenue,” Komolafe said.