Nigeria lost $50 bn investments over the last ten years due to stagnation and uncertainty in the petroleum industry, according to Buhari


President Muhammadu Buhari said in Abuja on Wednesday that the uncertainty created by the non-passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), lack of progress, and stagnation in the petroleum industry has cost Nigeria an estimated $50 billion in investments over the last ten years.

The President said the stagnation was affecting the economy’s growth during remarks at a ceremony commemorating the passage of the PIA, which preceded the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting. He cited a lack of political will on the part of previous administrations to implement the necessary changes.
According to the President, the signing of the Petroleum Industry Bill on August 16, 2021, will put an end to decades of uncertainty and underinvestment in the industry.

“We are all aware that previous administrations recognized the need to further align the industry for global competitiveness, but there was a lack of political will to make the necessary changes.

“This lack of progress has stymied the industry’s growth and our economy’s prosperity. Nigeria has lost an estimated US$50 billion in investment over the last ten years as a result of the PIB’s failure to pass.

“This administration believes that passing the Petroleum Industry Bill in a timely manner will assist our country in attracting investments across the entire oil and gas value chain.

“In light of the value that a stable fiscal framework for the oil and gas industry will provide to our Nation and investors, our Administration has determined that it is necessary to work with the two chambers of the National Assembly to ensure the passage of the PIB,” he said.

The bill’s signing, according to the President, is part of the administration’s commitment to building a competitive and resilient petroleum industry that will attract investment, improve our revenue base, create jobs, and help us achieve our economic diversification goals.

As a “nation that relies on oil resources for the development of other sectors, Nigeria operates a petroleum industry that is largely governed by laws enacted over 50 years ago, such as the principal legislation, the Petroleum Act of 1969, and other obsolete legislations,” the President stated.

He stated that the President’s assent to the “Petroleum Industry Act 2021″ marked the start of a journey toward a competitive and resilient petroleum industry that will attract investments to help the country’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.

“The Petroleum Industry Act 2021” establishes a regulatory environment that ensures efficiency and accountability throughout the oil and gas value chain, as well as repositioning NNPC as a commercially driven National Petroleum Company accountable to the Federation.

“The Act also establishes a direct benefit framework to support the long-term development of Host Communities. I urge the host communities to carefully examine the contents of the Bill, which, if implemented, will provide them with real and long-term benefits.

“Furthermore, the Act calls for a deliberate end to gas flaring, which would help Nigeria meet its Paris Agreement Nationally Determined Contributions by providing a funding mechanism to support gas flare out projects in host communities,” he added.

The administration believes that passing the Petroleum Industry Bill in a timely manner will help our country attract investments across the oil and gas value chain, according to the President.

The President, while directing immediate implementation of the framework for the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), urged all relevant stakeholders to comply and reposition themselves for full activation within 12 months.

Mr Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, will lead the implementation team, according to the President, who urged all Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDA) to adjust to the transition, which is intended to reposition the economy.

“To reaffirm this administration’s commitment to delivering the law’s value proposition, I’ve approved an implementation framework that will begin immediately to ensure the industry envisioned in the new law takes shape.
“The implementation process, which will be led by the Hon Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, has been given a 12-month deadline to complete the implementation of this act. As a result, I am directing all relevant government Ministries, Departments, and Agencies to fully cooperate in ensuring the law’s successful and timely implementation,” he said.
The President praised the 9th Assembly’s leadership for continuing to pursue national aspirations and demonstrating mutual harmony with the Executive in the pursuit of a patriotic outcome in the passage of the PIB.

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“I also commend the entire executive team for their tireless efforts to ensure the passage of this critical legislation for our country. I appreciate the contributions and support of Nigerians and other industry stakeholders in achieving this historic milestone,” he said.
The Senate President, Dr. Ahmed Lawan, the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase, and other lawmakers, members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC), and the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari, were all present at the ceremony.

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