Nigeria lost US$750mn to oil theft, says NNPC

bola NigeriaNigeria lost around US$750mn to crude oil theft in 2019, according to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)

In Abuja, Mele Kolo Kyari, group managing director of NNPC, spoke on “Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea; Issues, Challenges for International Trade, National Security and Sustainable Development of Member States.”

According to Kyari, other security challenges include vandalism of oil and gas infrastructure and kidnapping threat to the personnel, which can potentially disrupt Nigeria’s economic diversification initiatives.

Nigeria, the largest economy in Africa, depends almost 90 per cent on oil and gas for its foreign exchange earnings and the NNPC sits on the top of the nation's wealth.

Taking a look at the Gulf of Guinea comprising of Nigeria, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Gabon, São Tomé and Príncipe, Angola and Congo, Kyari said that the security challenges confronting the NNPC are linked to the happenings in the Gulf of Guinea. There is a deep connection between the various shades of insecurity challenges as they were all linked to what is happening in the Gulf of Guinea and the entire maritime environment.

Yemi Adetunji, chief operating officer at NNPC for downstream operation, noted that in 2016, the Gulf of Guinea accounted for more than half of the global kidnappings for ransom, with 34 seafarers kidnapped out of 62 cases worldwide.

The NNPC is working in tandem with security agencies to tackle the security challenges.

Kyari further remarked that crude will continue to be relevant. “By 2050, fossil fuel would account for 80 per cent of the energy mix, and there would still be consumption of at least 100 mmbbl of oil per day. We are determined to remain relevant in the long term,” Kyari stressed.

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