26 January 2021 by James Itodo…
The Oil Producers Trade Section(OPTS) says the current Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) before the National Assembly does not address key challenges facing gas sector development in the country.
Chairman of OPTS, Mr Mike Sangster made the remark at a two -day public hearing on the Petroleum industry Bill, PIB in Abuja.
He, however said OPTS had conducted a detailed review of the PIB and applauds the Federal Government’s effort to introduce a comprehensive bill to address a number of issues affecting operations of the oil and gas industry.
According to him
OPTS has observed some positive provisions in the bill which includes lower headline taxes rates for onshore and shallow water oil development activities.
He said the PIB also made provision for commercialisation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation(NNPC)to bring about improved business efficiency among other laudable initiatives in the PIB.
He said Nigeria has vast gas resources to meet domestic demand and satisfy export demands for generation of substantial revenue for the Federal Government.
He maintained that the gas resources, if properly developed could be a catalyst for economic development.
This, Sangster further said would help solve the perennial electricity problem, drive gas based industries, create thousands of jobs and ultimately enable transition to a diversified gas -based economy.
He, however,said the PIB as it is did not make provision to address inadequate midstream infrastructure, regulated gas pricing , huge and long standing debts for the gas sector.
This, he said would potentially jeopardise the realisation of government’s aspirations for the domestic gas sector.
According to him, the PIB should provide a clear path for transitioning to free market based pricing and not to add additional compliance conditions on domestic gas delivery.