By Solomon Asowata
The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) says the development of local content has helped in mitigating the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the operations of Nigeria’s oil and gas industry.
Mr Isaac Yalah, Director, Finance and Personnel Management, NCDMB, made the assertion at the Nigerian Content Capacity Building Workshop organised for media stakeholders in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the workshop had as its theme: “Sustaining Nigerian Content Development Amidst COVID-19 pandemic: The Role of the Media.”
Yalah said: ” Local capacities developed through the implementation of Nigerian Content Act sustained the operations of the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While other sectors were facing operational challenges and disruptions, the oil and gas industry was able to operate because we have implemented the Nigerian content and developed our capacities.”
He emphasised that the vision of the Nigerian Content 10-Year Strategic Roadmap was to achieve 70 per cent value retention by the year 2020.
“Other targets of the roadmap are to create 300,000 jobs, retain 14 billion dollars out of 20 billion dollars annual industry spend, build shipyards and manufacturing facilities, ” Yalah said.
He listed the achievements of the board in 2020 to include the approval of the 50million dollar Nigerian Content Research and Development Fund by the NCDMB Governing Council.
The director also cited the inauguration of the 5,000 barrels per day Waltersmith Modular Refinery at Ibigwe, Imo State
Another official, Dr Ginah Ginah, said the board was committed to integration of host communities in the oil and gas value chain.
Ginah, General Manager, Corporate Communications and Zonal Coordination Division, NCDMB, said this necessitated the creation of the Community Content Guideline (CCG) by the board and operating oil companies.
He said :”The CCG provides a framework for engaging youths of host communities in employment, training and contracts in projects.
“The CCG also provides for the establishment of critical infrastructure to stimulate development, attract new businesses to host communities and sustain the growth of host community entrepreneurs through funding and policy support.
“One of the key provisions of the CCG is that 100 per cent of unskilled job roles should be reserved exclusively for indigenes of the host community of projects.”
Ginah noted that the guideline also set aside 50 per cent of semi-skilled roles and at least 10 per cent of skilled roles for indigenes of host communities.
In his welcome remarks, Mr Naboth Onyesoh, Manager, Corporate Communications, NCDMB, said the media was a critical stakeholder and had a key role to play in increasing local content in the oil and gas sector.
He said the workshop was aimed at improving collaboration between the board and the media in order to achieve its strategic road map. (NAN)