07 July 2013, Abuja – The Chairman of Brass LNG Limited, Dr. Jackson Gaius-Obaseki, has said positive engagement between the company’s shareholders and the federal government, and quick decision making are critical steps for getting an early Final Investment Decision, FID.
Speaking at the company’s 9th Annual General Meeting, AGM, in Abuja, Gaius-Obaseki said the unexpected exit of the United States multi-national oil company, ConocoPhillips, from the project is a major set-back.
According to him, “FID is possible in the shortest possible time, but, only if the shareholders and government will embark on the necessary engagement to address the remaining obstacles. I remain optimistic that our shareholders and ever-supportive government will rise to this challenge.”
However, he said the three remaining shareholders in the project- the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, with an equity stake of 49 per cent; Eni with 17 per cent stake and Total also with 17 per cent shareholding- are fully prepared to cushion the shock and would now go ahead to sort out other conditions precedent to an early FID.
ConocoPhillips, in pulling out, changes its global business focus and strategy away from Nigeria.
Gaius-Obaseki, however said: “The recent challenges have indeed served to highlight the resilience of the Brass LNG project. This resilience, which has now become the project’s defining feature, must however be enriched through greater cooperation and commitment from shareholders on one hand and government’s active collaboration with the project’s promoters to remove the remaining challenges to the earliest attainment of FID for the Brass LNG project.”
On his part, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu, stated that other stakeholders in the project had taken ConocoPhillips’ exit in good strides, adding that: “I am strongly optimistic, COP has indicated its intention to divest its equity and is in the process of exit but one thing that has encouraged us is the commitment of its management to ensure that all the support we require in terms of technical support and its participation up to when suitable replacement is found will be maintained. It has kept faith with that.”