IPPG, OPTS call for PIA amendment, tackling oil theft, others

The Independent Petroleum Producers Group (IPPG) has underscored the need to focus on amending critical aspects of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA 2021) and ensuring security across the Niger Delta, to stem oil theft.

It also called for immediate ramping up of oil and gas production, focusing on priority areas to shore up revenue base and generate needed forex for macroeconomic stability in the short to medium term.

The IPPG Chairman, Mr Abdulrazaq Isa, made this known on Monday in Abuja at the National Assembly Capacity Building Workshop organised by the IPPG and the Oil Producers Trade Section (OPTS).

Isa, while listing three key priority focus areas to achieve stability to include amendment of critical aspects of PIA, ensuring security in the Niger Delta region and establishment of a value-creating midstream and downstream sector.

These, he said would catalyse and rapidly industrialise the Nigerian economy thus significantly boosting Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and job creation.

He stressed the need for the amendment of critical aspects of the PIA primarily aimed at establishing a strong regulatory and governance framework to guide its effective implementation.

According to him, the need to ensure intended benefits of the industry-wide reforms and enhance the competitiveness to attract the level of funding requires to fully optimise our vast hydrocarbon resources for future generations.

The IPPG Chairman called for enhancement of the security across the Niger Delta to safeguard and build a conducive operating environment to stem crude theft.

This, he said would sustainably address the unprecedented production decline witnessed in recent years.

He also commended the National Assembly on its role in enacting legislation and diligently carrying out its oversight function for the growth of the oil and gas industry.

“It has been two years since the enactment of the PIA and this landmark legislation continues to transform the Nigerian oil and gas industry and laid a solid foundation for its growth and development.

“However, investor uncertainty, a core element of the ongoing reforms, persists and this is further exacerbated by the global energy transition drive and the insecurity in the Niger Delta with the resultant effect being a significant drop in the nation’s production output.

“The capacity building workshop serves as an avenue for fostering collaboration between the National Assembly and the oil and gas industry.

“It would provide an overview of the current state of our industry, highlight key bottlenecks stifling industry growth and capital flow and the key priorities in the short to medium term to meet the industry’s growth aspirations,” he said.

Also speaking, Chairman, OPTS, Rick Kennedy said because of the key role the legislature has in defining laws governing the industry and the larger economy, they considered the National Assembly as an important part in moving the industry forward.

Kennedy, who is also the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Chevron, said the workshop would focus on key challenges currently facing the industry, leading to dwindling production and low investment in the sector and what was required to resolve the issues.

“We believe that this program would equip you on how to support and hopefully clear up some misperceptions in the industry. We would also be happy to hear your expectations on how best to move the industry forward.

“Our goal is to make Nigeria the destination of choice, once again for investors in the oil and gas sector. OPTS and IPPG are willing to work with you to realise this dream,” he said.

According to him, OPTS is made up of 28 member companies comprising international and indigenous oil companies collectively, accounting for approximately 90 per cent Nigeria’s crude oil production.

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