03 September 2012, Sweetcrude, LAGOS – NIGERIA’S Petroleum Minister, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, has reiterated government’s support for local oil companies in all aspects of the oil and gas sector, saying plans were in the works by the government to raise funds in support of genuine local investors wishing to exploit opportunities in the sector.
She spoke at the inauguration of Orient Petroleum Plc’s Anambra River Production Facility in Aguleri-Otu in Anambra State, the first oil production from an inland basin in Nigeria.
According to Alison-Madueke, President Goodluck Jonathan has directed both the Ministry of Petroleum and the Ministry of Finance to set up an inter-ministerial committee to fashion out modalities for raising financial support for indigenous oil companies like Orient who are ready to invest not only in production but also in refining to add value to the crude oil and gas locally before exporting in order to generate employment for the youth and more money for the country.
Maintaining that the significance of the event was not just in the discovery and production of oil from an inland basin, she said the good thing was that the achievement was by an indigenous company.
“This shows the way we want to go in the industry; we want to encourage more indigenous oil companies to emulate Orient Petroleum Resources in investing not just in production but also in refining. “We are working with the Ministry of Finance to set up an inter-ministerial committee to work out ways to give financial support to indigenous companies to bring in modular refineries,” she stated.