23 June 2016, 2016, Abuja – Regulatory agencies in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector are worried that efforts to grow local technology and human capital through the Nigerian Content Development law could be hampered by the prevailing lull in the industry.
In the last three years, there has been apathy by investors to commit to new projects in Nigeria owing to the inability of the government to pass the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) into law and spell out clear fiscal terms for investors, especially on deep offshore projects.
Having no new projects come on stream, especially by International Oil Companies (OICs) means less job opportunities created for the numerous indigenous firms who were supposed to be the beneficiaries of the Nigerian content law.
According to the Zonal Coordinator, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) for Akwa Ibom and Cross River Zonal Operations, Mr. Uduak Obot, the challenge posed by the lull required the efforts of all stakeholders to resolve.
Obot who spoke at a joint products presentation and Original Equipment Manufacturer’s (OEM) forum organised by Engineering Automation Technology Limited (EATECH) in Lagos however commended the efforts of so far made by local firms to harness the opportunities created by the local content law. “It is pleasing to see that in-country capacities and capabilities have already been built but we are mindful of the current economic environment lull in the oil and gas business and threat to these capacities,” said Obot.
“I therefore cannot empathise enough the need for us all to urgently work together to see that new projects come up to sustain jobs and these capacities,” he added.
The Director of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Mr. Mordecai Ladan who also spoke at the event said amid the harsh operating environment, the Nigerian government and the relevant regulatory agencies would continue to encourage local and indigenous companies to succeed.