*Says 7 years FID jinx has been broken
Lagos — The Executive Secretary Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote has hailed the outstanding roles played by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva and the Management of Nigeria LNG in accomplishing the signing of the Equipment Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract for the LNG Train 7 project.
In his remarks to the formal contract signing ceremony, which held in a virtual form on Wednesday, the Executive Secretary underscored the dogged focus of the Minister in getting the Train 7 project to the contract signing stage.
He pointed out that holding the ceremony in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic is a fantastic testimony to the Minister’s declaration in January that Year 2020 would be the Year of Gas in Nigeria.
He also commended the management of NLNG led by Mr. Tony Attah for breaking the jinx of lack of true Final Investment Decisions (FIDs) in our oil and gas industry in the last seven (7) years.
“Big congratulations to the NLNG shareholders including the NNPC, SPDC, Total and NAOC for placing their bet on Nigeria and voting for the commencement of this project,” he said.
He said the contract signing ceremony signalled the take-off of the long-awaited project that will create jobs, generate revenue, provide local business opportunities, and ensure stable outlets for the utilization of our gas reserves reputed to be one of the highest in the world.
Wabote hinted that the Board was always excited whenever in-country capacities and capabilities are being utilized and developed.
He confessed that “empty fabrication yards, fields without rigs, vessels without contracts, and other low-level industry activities can be very depressing. We are really excited that the Train 7 project has brighten up our outlook of the industry.”
He canvassed for more major projects, stressing that NCDMB would always implement its mandate in a pragmatic way by catalyzing and accelerating projects regulatory approvals.
He maintained that NCDMB was not set up to stop or complicate project implementation but to ensure win-win outcome for investors and our dear country. “The SLA we signed with NLNG to ensure acceleration of our processes and expedited approvals has been a very useful tool to all parties.”
The Executive Secretary further revealed that the Train 7 project would attract huge direct foreign investment and stimulate the local economy.
He said that: “During construction, 55 percent of the engineering activities will be carried out in Nigeria, 55 percent of all procurements will be done by competent Nigerian vendors and 100 percent of the installations and construction of Train 7 will be executed in Nigeria.”
Speaking further, he expressed confidence in the capacity of Saipem, the lead contractor of the project, indicating that the company had made significant investments in Nigerian and had made long-time commitment to Local Content growth.
“I hope that Saipem will not only strive to deliver on time and within budget, but also use this project to expand and strengthen local capabilities,” he said.
He said other Nigerian companies and community contractors awarded jobs based on their proven capacity would also be expected to deliver value and prove their mettle.
An elated Executive Secretary also expressed hope that Train 7 project will trigger other big-ticket FID’s and commencement of the other oil and gas projects in the funnel.
“We assure operators and project promoters that NCDMB is poised to enhance investment and the development of our oil and gas sector,” he concluded.