NNPC’s Group Managing Director, Mr. Andrew Yakubu, disclosed this to an energy conference in Lagos, where he stated that for Nigeria to realize its dream of joining the top 20 economies in the world by 2020, it must deregulate its downstream oil and gas subsector to attract investment inflow.
Represented by the Coordinator of Corporate Planning and Strategy of the Corporation, Dr. Tim Okon, Yakubu said this was necessary to build Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product, GDP, to a level that would make the attainment of the 2020 dream possible.
According to him, the country’s $450billion economy represented only five per cent of United States’ $9trillion economy and was also below Indonesia’s $1trillion economy.
Yakubu stated that as Africa’s largest market, Nigeria should be part of the efforts to pull the continent out of poverty and despair.
This, he said the country could do by deregulating the downstream sector to have an efficient economy that would provide employment and encourage investments in different areas, so as to translate the country’s endowed natural resource to economic development.
“You have seen what deregulation has done to the telecommunication. Telecommunication is a classical example. You have the policy; you have the Nigerian Communication Communications Commission (NCC), which does the regulating and you have the players,” he said.
He stated that the country had been on the path to deregulate the downstream sector but had done so peace meal, adding that the current regulation of the prices of petrol and kerosene had resulted in a huge subsidy that had become unaffordable.