The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, NCDMB, has said that following the exclusion of its yearly operating cost from federal budget effective this fiscal year, government will be saving at least N5 billion annually.

By the fiscal arrangement, the Board will now depend on the Nigerian Content Intervention Fund (NCIF) to finance its operations. The NCIF is funded from one per cent deduction from contracts award by operating international oil companies in the country.

Giving this hint at a one-day capacity building event organized by the Board for energy and business journalists in Lagos, the General Manager of the Nigerian Content Development Fund, Mr. Obinna Ofili, puts the number of IOCs making contributions to the NCIF at about 157.

According to him, last year contributions to the Fund stood at over $72 million, representing on the average a monthly remittance of $6 million, adding that from January to April this year, accruals to the Fund stood at $45 million.

Ofili explained that the Board had become now self-sustaining and was no longer receiving subvention from government.

The NCIF boss pointed out further that the Board was retaining $5 billion annually in-country from yearly $20 billion oil industry expenditures and that plans were that within the next decade, the retention would have risen to $14 billion or 70 percent of the industry yearly expenditure.

On the $200 million Nigerian Content Intervention Fund, NCIF, he explained the Fund would help increase indigenous participation in the oil and gas industry, promote growth and development of Nigerian content activities in the nation’s hydrocarbon resources industry.

In addition, Ofili projected that the Fund would also deepen the creation of linkages to other sectors of the nation’sl economy and by so doing, boost the oil and gas sector’s contributions to the National Gross Domestic Product, GDP.

The NCIF is a pool of funds made available by the NCDMB and being managed by the Bank of Industry (BoI) to provide credit to indigenous manufacturers, service providers and other key players in the oil and gas industry.