13 December 2012, Sweetcrude, Lagos – The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, says Nigeria’s crude oil production was down 500,000 barrels per day for most part of this year, forced by flooding, oil theft and sabotage of oil pipelines.
Nigeria is Africa’s top oil producer and a leading producer within OPEC.
As a result of flooding in states in the oil-rich Niger Delta, the Royal Dutch Shell and French supermajor, Total, shut part of their production, as well holding back on exports.
The projection by the 12-member organisation in this regard falls into place with that of the the US Energy Information Agency, which reported recently that crude oil deliveries to the US from Nigeria were down for the summer, by about 500,000 barrels, compared to the same time last year.
OPEC reported that Nigerian crude oil production for November stood at around 1.85 million barrels per day, down from the 2.1 million bpd on average for last year.
“Nigerian crude production suffered from a combination of natural disasters, oil theft and sabotage to the oil infrastructure,” OPEC stated in its December report.
Nigeria, which earns over 75 per cent of its revenues from oil, is the seventh oil producer among the 12-member OPEC cartel. The recent wave of tragic floods in most states of the country has drastically reduced Nigeria’s crude oil production by 500,000 barrels per day (bpd), the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, said.
Director of DPR, Osten Olorunsola, also confirmed in a statement, that the floods in oil-producing areas had led to a sharp drop in the country’s production , explaining that production has begun to ramp up and has peaked at 2.3mbpd.
According to him, both big and small oil producers were affected by the floods. But, he stated that smaller producers, particularly the marginal fields’ operators, were the worst hit, with quite a number of firms completely shutting in oil production.