*Says it delivered on promises in last two years
Lagos — Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content and Development Board, NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote has listed opportunity areas of target for investors to take advantage of within the next two to five years in the Nigerian oil and gas sector.
While delivering the welcome address at the ongoing 2-day 3rd edition of the bi-annual Nigerian Oil & Gas Opportunity Fair, NOGOF 2021, Wabote identified the opportunities as policy-driven, funds driven, infrastructure driven, people driven, and linkage-driven opportunities.
Giving deeper insights into the above, the NCDMB boss said the roll-out of new policies and enactment of new laws typically, has opened a new vista of opportunities for discerning investors.
According to him, impending passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill, amendment of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development, NOGICD Act, the ratification of the African Continental Free Trade Area, AfCFTA agreement, and the recently approved and gazetted ministerial regulations are some of the policy and regulatory-driven opportunities currently in-country.
Wabote also mentioned the rollout of executive orders by the Federal Government to drive key aspects of the present administration’s goals, saying that the orders have been useful in raising awareness about local content opportunities as well as demonstrating executive backing of the practice.
He identified funding as one of the critical elements required to realise oil and gas opportunities, adding that the Board has widened the options for accessing its intervention funds by increasing the size of the funds from $200million to $350million, increasing the number of products from 5 to 7, and also increasing the number of managing banks from one to two.
He revealed that the USD50million Nigerian Content Research and Development, NCRD Fund has been approved by the NCDMB Governing Council to drive basic research, commercialisation of research breakthroughs, establishment of Centers of Excellence, and to sponsor University endowments.
“To date, we have committed a total of USD332million to attract project developments valued at $3.7billion under our commercial ventures partnership program. The Federal Government is also implementing the N2.3trillion Economic Sustainability Plan managed by the Office of the Vice President for public works, housing program, Solar Home Systems, agriculture, healthcare, and social investment”, he said.
While providing status update of commitments and actions from previous conferences, Wabote said the Board had fulfilled its pledges.
“In 2019, we promised to complete our 17-storey headquarters building. I am happy to report that we delivered on this promise with the commissioning and naming of the edifice as the Nigerian Content Tower by President Muhammadu. We successfully relocated all our staff into the building in Q3 of 2020,” he said.
In addition, Wabote said power supply to the edifice is guaranteed from the fully commissioned and operational gas-fired 10MW Power Plant at Elebele thereby cutting cost from the use of diesel by more than 70%.
This year’s NOGOF is ‘’Leveraging Opportunities and Synergies for Post Pandemic Recovery Of The Nigerian Oil & Gas Industry’’.
As promised, he said the Board had published the 2nd edition of the NOGOF Compendium of Opportunities containing 5-year outlook of projects in the upstream, mid-stream, and downstream sectors of the industry- a total of thirty-three companies were featured with over eighty-one major projects listed.
“We also promised to deliver on our investment policy on modular refineries. We have proven the concept with the commissioning of the 5,000bpd Waltersmith Modular Refinery at Ibigwe, Imo State”, adding that three other modular refineries are under construction under its commercial ventures programs.
“In the last two years, we have commenced partnership with NEDO Gas Processing Company in Kwale, Delta State for the establishment of 80MMscfd of Gas Processing Plant and a 300MMscfd Kwale Gas Gathering hub, partnership with Triansel Gas Limited in Koko, Delta State for the 5,000MT LPG Storage and Loading Terminal Facility, partnership with Duport Midstream for the construction of Energy Park inclusive of a modular refinery, power plant, and 40MMscfd gas processing facility at Egbokor, Edo State, partnership with Brass Fertiliser for the development of a 10,000MT/day Methanol Plant and 500MMscfd gas processing plant at Odiama in Brass, partnership with Rungas Group for the manufacturing of 1.2million composite LPG cylinders every year in Bayelsa and Lagos States, and partnership with Butane Energy to deepen LPG utilization in the North with the roll-out of LPG bottling plants and depots in ten (10) Northern States of Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Bauchi, Nassarawa, Zamfara, Niger, Plateau, Gombe, Jigawa states and Abuja”, he said.
He added that NCDMB has also implemented other actions contained in the 2019 NOGOF communique such as ascertaining the capacity of fabrication yards in Nigeria, gap closure of special skills such as Certification of Level-3 Non-Destructive Testing Practitioners and setting up of Diploma Program for Marine Quantity Surveyors at the Niger Delta University. These were done to replenish aging practitioners and scarcity of skills set.
He also highlighted opportunity areas to target as the Nigerian economy emerges from the impact of COVID-19 pandemic.
According to him, the desired post-COVID19 level of opportunities cannot be harnessed by Nigerian companies without the domiciliation of critical infrastructure such as roads, power, trunklines, railways, and others.
“The Nigerian Oil and Gas Park Scheme, NOGaPS at Odukpani in Cross River state and the one at Emeyal-1 in Bayelsa state are at advanced stages of completion. There are opportunities in areas of manufacturing, logistics, security, facilities management, training, catering services, occupational health services, and many others.
“Just yesterday, I passed through the newly opened Bayelsa International Airport. The spanking new facility is breaming with opportunities and waiting for discerning investors to take steps to realize the first-mover advantage.
“The railways and the train stations, the Second Niger Bridge, the AKK Pipeline, and other infrastructure project provide unique opportunities for investments and businesses to thrive”, he said.
The NCDMB’s ES also listed projects to expect before the next NOGOF conference as; completion and commissioning of two additional modular refineries in Edo and Bayelsa States, completion, and commissioning of composite LPG cylinder manufacturing plants with combined capacity of 1.2million cylinders per annum, commissioning of three other projects dedicated to gas processing, LPG bottling, and production of base oil, commissioning, and commencement of operations from the Boards industrial parks at Odukpani and Emeyal-1, commercialisation of at least one R&D project, including close skills gaps in under-water welding and any other core skills required in the industry.