Nigeria: Crude Oil Will Remain Primary Source of Energy - NNPC

19 November 2019

Despite the predicted global crude oil decline, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has insisted that oil and gas will remain relevant as the primary source of energy for the seven billion people on the earth.

The Chief Operating Officer (COO), Upstream of NNPC, Mr. Roland Ewubare, said there was no magic yet for the replacement of oil and gas as a primary source of energy.

"Yes, there will be some regions that will migrate towards renewables. But don't forget that growth in terms of absolute numbers and economic expansion comes primarily from Asia and Africa.

"In the long term, those areas are not where the use of electric vehicles has gotten close to significant levels.

"So, I have no worry about the future of oil. It is bright and robust," he said in a paper at the just-concluded Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition Conference (ADIPEC) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) quoted him as saying that NNPC's primary aspiration is to move Nigeria swiftly to full energy security and use energy as a tool to reduce disparity in prosperity.

Ewubare said: "The conversation here was about the transition to a greener future as it were. Nigeria is a country of over 200 million people and whatever we do has an impact in Africa and the rest of the world.

"We also realise that we have an economy to grow. This means that while we are mindful of the larger issues of the environment, we have to address issues that concern our immediate development.

"NNPC has the renewable energy division. We have all kinds of initiatives in place around solar, ethanol and biomass. Most of the initiatives are in the incubation type stage.

"You cannot be an oil company today and not see yourself as an energy company. Renewables are part of the need."

Speaking on local content, the NNPC chief promised that it will continue to pursue its local content agenda for the overall development of the nation's economic growth and the oil and gas sector.

He said NNPC would grow indigenous participation in the sector's value chain, enhance job creation, revenue generation and development of in-country capacities.

"Local content is not a lip service. If you think about the volume of contracting Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) in Exploration Production, a significant value is lost to the country.

"Therefore, the more Nigerians we can bring on board, the more in-country competence will be harnessed. This will increase talent development, employment, and revenue generation."

On growing the nation's oil reserve, Ewubare said NNPC was targeting a 67 per cent in-country support projection on other inland basins after the Egina project.

According to him, further exploration is broad-based and not limited to the Chad Basin or the Benue trough.

"As announced, we will migrate towards the Anambra Basin and other inland frontier basins.

"This reduces the risk of concentration on the Niger Delta and contributes to energy security because every geographical region has its own repository of hydro carbons under explorations and production.

"This sense of ownership helps to build trust and security," he said.

Meanwhile, the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)'s share of India's oil imports fell to 73 per cent in October, its lowest monthly share since at least 2011, tanker data from sources showed, as refiners shipped in fuel from the United States and other suppliers.

India, which usually imports about 80 per cent of its needs from members of OPEC has been diversifying its sources of oil as local refiners have upgraded plants to process cheaper crude grades.

India, the world's third biggest oil importer, shipped in 4.56 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil in October, about 3.3 per cent less compared with a year ago, data showed. Of that, it bought 3.43 million bpd oil from OPEC.

OPEC's share of India's imports in September was about 81 per cent although total volumes were lower, as the South Asian nation cut imports to a three-year low due to maintenance at some refineries.

In October, Iraq replaced Saudi Arabia as India's top oil supplier, tanker arrival data showed, with refiners cutting purchases of the more expensive Saudi oil.

To make up for lower Saudi purchases, India also boosted purchases from Nigeria, the third biggest supplier in October, as well as from Kuwait and Mexico.

Saudi Arabia's crude oil exports in September fell by three per cent to 6.67 million barrels per day (bpd) from 6.88 million bpd in August, official data showed.

Drone and missile attacks on September 14 on two plants at the heart of Saudi Arabia's oil industry - Abqaiq and Khurais - temporarily knocked out more than half the Kingdom's output.

The United States said Iran sponsored the attacks, a claim which Tehran denied.

September crude output fell by 660,000 bpd to 9.129 million bpd, figures from the Joint Organisation's Data Initiative (JODI) showed

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