The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru, on Thursday said that the corporation had signed over $3 billion oil and gas development pact with some investors in order to grow the nation’s oil and gas industry.

Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru
NNPC Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru

Baru made the disclosure while speaking on investment in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry at the ongoing 7th Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC’s) International Seminar in Vienna, Austria.

He explained that the agreement was a third party financing deal with international banks, adding that oil revenue remained crucial to current efforts to improve the nation’s revenue from the industry for national development.

The industry expert pointed out that the corporation recognised the challenges as well as the opportunity oil demand growth were creating for the country, hence its commitment to attracting adequate funds to the sector.

He said: “The balance of objectives requires that we undertake a paradigm shift in our business model to ensure that we attract capital and sustain flow of investment.

“Much more, the recent fiscal challenge experienced by the nation places a burden for change; hence we have undertaken to broaden the base of investment sources outside traditional government funding.

“To encourage the existing players in the industry, particularly the traditional JV partners, we undertook to settle all outstanding cash call arrears amounting to 5 billion dollars.

“This has restored confidence in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.

“We have also signed third party financing deals with international banks on new oil and gas development worth over 3 billion dollars”, the NNPC boss added.

Baru also disclosed that NNPC had executed a contractor financing deal of about $1 billion with Schlumberger for the development of 250 million barrels of oil equivalent fields in the Niger Delta while gas supply to the domestic market had tripled from 500mmscf/d in 2010 to about 1500mmscf/d currently.

He explained further: “We have completed and commissioned almost 600km of new gas pipelines thereby connecting all existing power plants to permanent gas supply pipeline.

“The recently sanctioned $2.8 billion, 614 Km Ajaokuta-Abuja-Kaduna-Kano pipeline projects is a demonstration of commitment to investing in local gas development”, Baru added.

Commenting at the forum, the Chairman of the Board of Directors, National Oil Corporation, Libya, Mr. Mustafa Sanalla, said that the 2011 uprising in the country led to production decline of about 450,000 barrels per day.

He lamented that between 2012 and 2017 his country had lost an equivalent of 107 billion dollars in oil production.