By Anthony Isaac
Despite the uncertainties existing in the oil and industry, following the non-passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), President Muhammadu Buhari has assured International Oil Companies (IOCs) and other operators that their investments in the sector are secured and returns guaranteed.
President Buhari who spoke at the opening of the 3rd Edition of the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit (NIPS) in Abuja on Monday, said Nigeria remains open and ready for legitimate investors.
Buhari who was represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha, disclosed that government has taken several steps in the past few years to improve investment environment in the country.
According to him, “I have always reiterated that Nigeria as a major oil producing nation remains ready and accessible for legitimate investment from interested countries, individuals and partners.
“Let me assure our foreign deligates that their investment are well secured in Nigeria and a high return on investment is always guaranteed. It cant get better anywhere.
He said the administration has improved the business environment and drive investment in upstream, midstream and downstream.
He said: “Towards achieving the realisation of a safe and secure investment environment, this administration has taken steps to repositioned the oil and gas sector in the following areas:
“Improve the business environment and drive investments in the upstream, midstream and downstream.
“Reviewed and gazetted policies and regulations to enhance operations in the sector.
“Enhance accelerated had revolution by developing infrastructure for multi domestic utilisation of LPG and CNG.
“Commence the process of commercialising has flare and increasing gas to power.
Fourthly, improve Niger Delta security through capacity building and economic empowerment.
“Enforce transparency and efficiency in the sector by building capacity, enabling the use of IT and automation and entrenching performance management.
“Increase refineries production capacity, improve stakeholders management, international relations and bi-lateral coordination.
“Carry out extensive work for the passage of the PIB, which will open up the oil and gas sector to competitiveness”.
Speaking earlier, the Minister of State Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Silva used the event to launch a new Nigeria Gas Transportation Network Code which will take effect from March 10, 2020.
The code is a contractual framework between the gas transportation network operator and gas shippers that specifies the terms and guidelines for operation and use of the gas network.
Sylva said: “The code will stimulate the domestic gas market, drive gas-based industrialisation and realisation of the government aspiration to move 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.
“The code in its current form has in-built modification mechanism. Hence, all stakeholders are assured of the periodic review of the Network Code to suit the dynamics of the industry”, he added.
He disclosed that over 50 countries were attending the summit, saying NIPS has become the foremost oil and gas conference on the African continent.