11 January 2019, Sweetcrude, Abuja — The Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, Wednesday, disclosed that oil and gas operators are increasingly contravening regulations and guidelines of the Nigerian petroleum industry, noting that their refusal to comply was bringing about increasing safety challenges in the downstream sector.
Speaking in Abuja, at the DPR Annual General Stakeholders’ Meeting, Mr. Mordecai Ladan, however, warned that the DPR would not sit and allow indiscipline in the industry.
Ladan, who was represented by Mr. Idris Ali, DPR Zonal Controller, Maiduguri, however, noted that the DPR would utilise the powers vested on it by the constitution to ensure that all oil and gas operators conform to national and international industry practices and standards.
He assured stakeholders that the oil and industry guidelines and regulations are investor-friendly, designed to help operators operate safely, efficiently and effectively, while protecting investments.
“Consequently, we have made laudable achievements in the downstream gas utilisation. The presence of investor-friendly guidelines and standards for the gas sector issued by DPR have seen the rapid growth of gas outlets in the country. The effort is in Top Gear to incorporate the gas applications into our automated system,” he added.
Speaking in the same vein, Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr. Maikanti Baru, bemoaned the refusal of operators to comply with regulations in the petroleum industry, stating that it is hampering the growth of the industry.
Baru, who was represented by Chief Operating Officer, Downstream of the NNPC, Mr. Henry Ikem-Obih, disclosed that compliance with regulations would eliminate crisis in the industry and guarantee the long-term viability of the industry.
He said, “Challenges for the industry of this size, would always be in getting all operators to fully comply with regulations. Compliance with regulations, we would say, is the biggest challenge in the industry today. Just for people to do the right things according to various laws and regulations we have in the industry.
“If everybody plays their part in achieving and sustaining compliance, we would have a pain-free experience for the consumers as well as the operators in long term viable businesses.”
Also speaking, Abuja Zonal Operations Controller, Mr. Abba Misau, lamented that non-compliance to statutory regulations with respect to operational procedures and guidelines in petroleum products storage depots, filling stations and LPG outlets had led to huge losses in investment, lives, and degradation of the environment.
He further stated that the DPR had set a first-quarter 2019 timeline for owners of illegal outlets, such as filling stations and gas plants to regularise their facilities, noting that the DPR will take all necessary measures within the law on defaulters after the expiration of the grace period.