Olu Verheijen, Special Adviser (SA) to the Nigerian President Bola Tinubu on Energy, has been engaging oil producing companies one-on-one on the theme of boosting the country’s crude oil output volume.
The meetings have been taking place at the Nigeria Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC)’s offices in Abuja. NUPRC calls them “tripartite engagements”.
Ms. Verheijen has met with officials from First E&P as well as officials from Waltersmith, at different times. Her team has also consulted with NNPC at the operational level as well as had a direct interface with NUPRC officials regarding how basic regulatory practices impact work on the field. Engagements with other companies are to follow.
Nigeria’s crude oil output has struggled in the 1.1 to 1.3Million Million barrels per day range between January 1 and July 31, 2023, and in one particular month, April 2023, dropped below 1Million barrels per day on average. The engagements are being conducted on the premise that improvement in operating stewardship can free up some thousands of crude oil per day currently locked behind pipe, while the larger issues of crude oil theft, metering integrity, take-off of new host community regulations and the overall inclement investment climate, are being addressed.
“At the end of the engagements, solutions will emerge to tackle existing problems after engaging in a robust discussion”, says Gbenga Komolafe, NUPRC chief executive.
“Verheijen invokes the President’s goals and target on the volume of what we are expected to produce as a nation and speaks on the urgency of the moment to ascertain the possible short term, midterm and long-term goals on our production target and NUPRC’s contribution to this target”, according to a statement by the regulator.