…N6bn from mining licensing between 2019-2021
In the face of unbridled infractions in the oil and gas industry, the country earned $34.22 billion from the oil and gas sector in 2019, a 4.88 per cent increase over the $32.63 billion dollars realised in 2018.
It however has lost $2.77 billion revenue, according to the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI). The losses are from computed from 42.25 million barrels of crude volume loss in 2019.
The startling revelations were contained in NEITI’s Oil and Gas audit report that was presented to the Media and Civil Society Organisations by George Abiye, Assistant Director, Oil and Gas, NEITI on Tuesday in Lagos.
The 2019 report covered 98 entities, including 88 oil and gas companies, nine government agencies and the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Company.
It said the country could have earned more revenue if not for crude oil losses due to metering error, theft and sabotage in the year under review.
The report, however, noted that the loss was 11.03 (21 per cent) lower than that recorded in 2018, which was 53.28 million barrels.
According to the report, the losses were incurred by companies that conveyed crude volumes through pipelines that were easily compromised by saboteurs.
The report, therefore, recommended that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) should ensure proper surveillance (land-based, and aerial satellite photography and geophones trenched pipelines).
It urged the NNPC to update its pipeline networks to minimize vandalism and crude oil theft.
The report also advised the Federal Government to ensure the success of oil and gas industrial parks in the Niger Delta.
“This will ensure the development of oil and gas infrastructure in the oil-producing states.
“It will create employment for the populace in the Niger Delta,” the report added.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Mining Cadastre Office (NMCO), an agency under the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, has generated mining licenses, N6.899 billion from 2019 to the first half 2021.
The revenue was also generated from the applications for mineral titles and permits as well as applications for the transfer, renewal, modification, and relinquishment of mineral titles or extension of areas.
In 2019, N2.580 billion was generated, in 2020 despite the lockdown, N2.303 billion was generated and N2.016 billion from January to June 2021.
Director-General (NMCO), Obadiah Nkom, who made the announcement said, over 34,678 applications for licenses have been received since the creation of the agency.
According to him, 17,612 applications were approved, 15,483 applications were rejected, 4,997 were revoked and 6,588 active titles are presently in existence.
The DG said this in Abuja, during an interactive session with newsmen.
He said that licenses are only revoked when people given the licenses refuse to work on or when they refuse to pay the required dues.
Nkom added, “So far, we don’t just revoke today and give to Mr. V tomorrow. No, we revoke, protect, the area during that period of three months or whatever. So that if the person does not send a petition because the person can write, once the area is blocked for the three months period. I do this so that I don’t revoke and realise that the issue is still being heard.’’