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February 21, 2024
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Oil theft, an organised crime in the Niger Delta region

FG tasks oil experts on solutions to local industry challenges

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By Emmanuella Anokam

The Federal Government has tasked oil and gas experts to proffer permanent solutions to challenges ranging from low productivity, oil theft, pipeline vandalism and gas flaring in the local oil industry.

Sen. Heineken Lokpobiri, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), made the call on Monday in Abuja, at the opening of the third Biennial International Conference on Hydrocarbon Science and Technology (ICHST 2023).

The conference, organised by the Petroleum Training Institute (PTI) and hosted by the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), aimed at resuscitating the observable decline in the nation’s oil production and embracing innovative research as practiced by the developed nations.

Lokpobiri said Nigeria had played major roles in the global oil industry and Africa in particular, hence the need to sustain its position.

“Nigeria has been a big player in the oil and gas industry both in Africa and globally. For us to sustain our place globally, we need to tackle challenges and key into what is trending globally.

“My expectations at the end of this conference is for us to come up with home grown solutions to address our problems in the petroleum industry.

“Nigeria have so many problems in the industry, I believe that the conference would come up with solutions to address those challenges and also produce document that will be implementable,” he said.

Also speaking, Dr Henry Adimula Principal/Chief Executive, PTI, said the conference underscored the need to shape the destiny of Nigeria’s oil/gas industry.

Adimula added that the essence of the conference was to explore, dissect, and contribute to a future teeming with possibilities.

He acknowledged the pioneering research conducted by the PTI which had substantially influenced the discussions.

“PTI’s development of economic models for gas investment, spanning the upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors, and creation of Modified Unit Technical Cost Model for oil and gas investment, ensures precise determination of the cost to produce a standard cubic foot of gas.

“These achievements underscore PTI’s dedication to innovative and environmentally responsible hydrocarbon resource utilisation,” he said.

Adimula said its collaborative research with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Research and Development Division had resulted in steps towards efficient storage system for Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) in powered tricycles.

According to him, this pioneering initiative marks a substantial stride towards sustainable energy solutions and cleaner transportation methods.

He said its strides in research and innovation also yielded results especially in securing a patent for the ‘Method of Improving the Rheological Properties of Potassium-Based Bentonite Clay’ under Nigerian Patent No NG/P/2020/200 as duly registered with the Nigerian Patents and Designs Registry.

These innovations, he said, reflected its steadfast dedication to sustainable and eco-friendly practices, serving as a testament to our unwavering commitment to pioneering research and development.

Mr Ahmed Aminu, the Executive Secretary PTDF, represented by Mrs Ifeoma Nwokike, General Manager Projects, in his address said the oil/gas sector, especially in Nigeria, was at an intersection of complex challenges and unprecedented opportunities.

According to Aminu, the industry grapples with a myriad of issues, from technological hurdles, research limitations, and the dwindling landscape of investments and finance.

The situation, he said underscored the importance of bolstering research funding and technological development to boost the sector.

“The imminent commencement of the Dangote Oil Refinery, the completion of pivotal pipeline infrastructure like the AKK, and the production initiatives at Komani oil field in Northern Nigeria, present a hopeful panorama of opportunities that can reinvigorate the industry,” he said.

In his keynote address, Dr Omar Ibrahim, the Secretary-General, African Petroleum Producers’ Organisation (APPO), identified the biggest victims of a speedy energy transition as the developing countries, especially those from Africa.

Ibrahim said the organisation had played major role in the sector by identifying three imminent challenges namely technology, expertise and markets.

“To create this future, the APPO Ministerial Council approved the recommendations of the APPO Long Term Strategy Committee to take three practical steps to address the imminent challenges,” he said.

The theme of the conference is: ‘The Future of the Oil and Gas Industry: Opportunities, Challenges and Development’. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

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Edited by Chinyere Joel-Nwokeoma

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