…As FG Sets Aside PIA, To Pay N4.6tr On Fuel Subsidy
Olushola Okunlade Writes
With all things considered, the Federal Government on Monday, soft-pedalled on its initial plan to remove subsidy on petrol, setting aside its much-trumpeted Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) to continue paying about N4.6 trillion provided crude oil price hovers around $85 per barrel.
Journalists had earlier reported last week that petrol may sell for N403 per litre, representing the current landing cost of the product, as against its current price of N165 from July 1, this year.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Limited had revealed that Nigeria consumes about 19.535 billion litres of petrol yearly, averaging 1.6 billion litres monthly. With about N241 now paid on every litre as subsidy, this brings yearly subsidy to about N4.6 trillion.
But in a reversal that may unsettle the petroleum industry, the Federal Government suspended indefinitely its planned fuel subsidy removal and will now amend the 2022 Appropriation Act to accommodate the new change to provide for subsidy payments from July 1, saying it is clear to even the blind and audible to the deaf that the situation of the country does not allow for that at the moment.
This was announced, yesterday, by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr. Zainab Ahmed, in a meeting with lawmakers at the National Assembly. She explained that due to ongoing consultations, it was agreed that the planned removal of fuel subsidy should be shelved till further notice.
This action followed the pressure mounted by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), which threatened to embark on a nationwide protest from January 27.
In the 2022 budget signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari last month, the provision of petrol subsidy was till June 30, but NLC said fuel subsidy removal at this period of high inflation would be resisted.
In seeking a soft landing based on outcry from Nigerians, Ahmed, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, and the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Limited, Mele Kyari, met with the National Assembly leadership to amend the law to provide for an extension of subsidy provision beyond June 2022.
The Finance Minister said the government had initially planned to remove subsidies on petroleum products from July, a reasonable provision was made in the 2022 national budget for subsidy payment till June.
She said: “Sequel to the passage of the PIA, which indicated that all petroleum products would be deregulated, we amended the fiscal framework to incorporate subsidy removal.
“However, after the budget was passed, we had consultations with a number of stakeholders and it became clear that the timing was problematic.
“We discovered that practically, there is still heightened inflation and that the removal of subsidy would further worsen the situation and impose more difficulties on the citizenry.
“President Muhammadu Buhari does not want to do that. What we are now doing is to continue with the ongoing discussions and consultations in terms of putting in place a number of measures.
“One of these measures include the roll-out of refining capacities of existing refineries and the new ones, which would reduce the number of products that would be imported into the country.
“We, therefore, need to return to the National Assembly to now amend the budget and make additional provision for a subsidy from July to whatever period that we agreed was suitable for the commencement of the total removal,” she said.
Sylva said: “As far as I am concerned, at this point, it is a legislative duty. The law has been passed but there is no law that is cast in stone.
“It is clear to everyone that operationalising the law is not possible within six months framework that has been provided for and if that time frame provided for in the law is not feasible, then it is a legislative responsibility now to see what can be done in extending that time frame for it to be in the purview of the law.
“It is very clear to the blind and audible to the deaf that it is not feasible at this time to remove subsidy. I know that some naysayers or political pundits want to bring politics into it but it is not within the contemplation of this administration now to remove subsidy.”
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, therefore, urged the organised labour unions in the country to shelve their proposed nationwide protests, as it was no longer necessary.
“There is need at one point to do away with subsidy but the President genuinely feel for Nigerians, particularly the most vulnerable. Significant arrangement for absorbing the shock that will come with the removal should be done and the timing is such that the impacts and consequences will not add to the hardship.”
He said the sympathy for Nigerians is not about NLC. “We are talking about every Nigerian. NLC is just an organised part of the system. Our concern is beyond NLC.
“I am taking this opportunity to speak to TUC and NLC to shelve this their plan to go on strike or demonstration. It is totally unnecessary. There is not going to be the removal of subsidy, so, let us not create unnecessary tension where there should be none. Please forget about the January 27 deadline.”
President Muhammadu Buhari had last year signed the PIA into law with provisions that deregulated the downstream sector. With the current development, the government may be altering its own law.
This is coming as the Federal Government, yesterday, engaged petrol marketers in Abuja, insisting conversion of cars to run on gas remained a viable alternative to subsidy removal.
Sylva noted that the government was doing everything possible to provide funding and enable an infrastructure that would fast-track the auto-gas policy.
Sylva said the country would convert one million public transport vehicles and install 1,000 refuelling centres within 36 months.
An energy expert, Michael Faniran, insisted that the reversal in the plan to remove fuel subsidy remained a step in the wrong direction.
Faniran, who noted that the national economy is suffering under the burden of fuel subsidy, said corruption opportunities under the fuel subsidy regime has been established by the government itself.
“Policy summersault by government always erodes investors confidence in any economy. Some investors would have been planning to take advantage of deregulation as provided in the PIA.
“Reversing this now means the provisions of the PIA would not be trusted by investors since the government could wake up any day to reverse any of the provisions,” he said.
Faniran noted that upcoming elections played a crucial role in the reversal of the subsidy, stressing that until the government can summon the political will, the country will continue to run around in circles on the subsidy regime.
An oil and gas lawyer, Emeka Okwuosa, noted that there is no best time to take the decision to remove the subsidy, adding that the country has only succeeded in postponing the evil day.
He also believed that the government halted the plan to buy the favour of Nigerians ahead of the upcoming elections.
“The postponement might be political. On one hand, we need complete deregulation for a seamless take-off of the PIA. We cannot keep the subsidy and expect a holistic impact on the positive effects of PIA. The government must have the political will to remove the subsidy,” he said, adding that the Dangote refinery coming on stream could provide succour.
Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, International Energy Services Limited (IESL), Diran Fawibe, said labour unions must be convinced and take the right decision instead of always fighting the removal of subsidies.
According to Fawibe, the government shares part of the blame on subsidy for not being able to fix refineries for over 20 years.
With low crude oil production, Fawibe noted that Nigeria is now facing double jeopardy, adding that the high crude oil price will return smuggling of products, as perpetrators are expected to smile to the bank.
He said: “If the government that has signed the PIA into law fails to implement it, who will take the government to court for violation? Let’s hope that the situation gets better and the government revert to full implementation of PIA in the downstream sector.”
The ruling party, All Progressives Congress (APC) has applauded the decision to suspend the planned removal of subsidies on petroleum products. APC, in a statement by its secretary caretaker committee, Senator John Akpanudoedehe, stated that the decision was in the best interest of Nigerians.
The party explained that the Federal Government took into consideration the fact that the removal of subsidy at this time would heighten inflation and cause undue hardship on the citizenry.
It noted: “Programmes and policies of government are meant to benefit the people. So, if the timing of the planned subsidy removal would cause hardship on citizens, then a review was necessary.”
The party commended President Buhari for always putting the welfare and wellbeing of Nigerians on the front burner through the implementation of programmes and policies.
The APC also commended the cordial relationship between the executive and the National Assembly, which has ensured good governance.
“Nigerians have been the ultimate beneficiaries as displayed in the positive outcomes of the meeting between Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr. Zainab Ahmed and the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan on the suspension of the planned subsidy removal,” it noted.
THE Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has said the APC-led Federal Government suspended the planned petrol subsidy removal because of the forthcoming 2023 elections. NBA President, Olumide Akpata, made this known yesterday while speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ programme.
He said: “I would have loved to think that the decision to suspend subsidy is because the government cares so much about the people and it is a government that is listening to the cries of the people.
“However, something tells me that this has more to do with what is in the offing; an election is coming up and they (government) must probably have sat down and thought about it and told themselves that it would be suicidal at this point to take out subsidy going into an election which is around the corner.”
The NLC has, however, said there is no going back on the January 27 nationwide protest against the proposed fuel price increase. The NLC, in a post on its Twitter handle, said: “The January 27 nationwide protest against the increase of petrol pump price is sacrosanct, no retreat, no surrender… Aluta continua.
“Three days to go, a nationwide protest against the increase in petrol pump price. One day, the poor will have nothing else to eat but the rich. Fuel price on international rate, pay minimum wage on the international rate.”
Also, sources within the NLC told The Guardian in Abuja last night that labour does not buy into the suspension gimmick.
This comes as the NLC has written to the 36 states governors intimating them on why it is embarking on the one-day protest.
NLC stated that the protest is geared at alerting the government on the sufferings that Nigerians are going through and the additional trauma that Nigerians would be subjected to if the government goes ahead with the hike in the price of refined petroleum products.
NLC maintained that the proposed hike if it goes through, would induce and impose an unprecedented degree of hardship on Nigerian workers, their families and the generality of the populace.
It stated that the net and multiplier effects of such socio-economic dislocation especially with regards to a decent standard of living, productivity and national security are better imagined than experienced.
Meanwhile, the Trade Union Congress (TUC) has said its decision not to be part of the NLC protests is not a disagreement but choosing a different approach.
Secretary-General of TUC, Musa-Lawal Ozigi, told The Guardian that it chose to put its state councils on standby and that modalities have been put in place to ensure TUC members proceed on mass protests and strike as soon as the subsidy is removed. Additionally, he expressed support for the full implementation of the deregulation policy.
His words: “The NEC of NLC met and decided on the nationwide protest. The TUC was not part of the meeting. We are not an affiliate of the NLC. We are a trade centre on our own. The decisions of the NLC are not binding on us. NLC and TUC are allies and we remain one.
“We have chosen to put our affiliates on standby. On our part, we have said consistently since 2020 that we support deregulation that is backed with domestic refining capacity. That is our position. We believe that domestic refining capacity will provide jobs on a sustainable basis, revive the manufacturing sector and grow the economy.
“Also, the government must provide palliatives that are enduring and not the N5,000 transport allowance to 40 million unnamed poor Nigerians. Whatever palliatives the government wants to implement, it must carry labour on board.”
Professor Benjamin Osisoma, President of the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN) told The Guardian that it is a good thing the government has listened to the voice of people because the condemnation of the policy has been unanimous.
“The people can only take as much as they can and you know that the burden of everyday living has not been easy on the average Nigerian. All we have seen is an increase in excise duty, an increase in VAT, an increase in this tax and that tax and now you want to increase the price of fuel. There’s no way these things can work.
“What I would the government rather do is to find a way we can generate an upswing in production by the private sector and ensure that every naira spent on subsidy adds value to the system.”
On his part, the Chairman, Online Hackney Practitioners Association of Nigeria, Mr Emeka Emerole, said the government has taken the right step. According to him, “before removing fuel subsidy, the government is supposed to give a long notice for the people to prepare their minds and come to terms with the new reality.”
THE pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, also yesterday, faulted the action of the Federal Government to suspend the removal of fuel subsidy. The National Publicity Secretary of Afenifere, Mr. Jare Ajayi, said: “It is unfortunate that we can still be talking of fuel subsidy six years into the administration of President Buhari.”
According to Afenifere spokesman, Buhari and his political party told Nigerians when campaigning to be voted into power that fuel subsidy was a scam.
“They promised to do away with it if voted into power. Beyond that, the party and its candidates promised to revamp the then comatose petroleum refineries.
“Over six years after the party came to power, the amount being brandied for the subsidy has gone up considerably while none of the four refineries in the country is working,” Afenifere lamented.
The body maintained that Nigerians are not impressed by the government’s decision to postpone the subsidy removal till further notice.
“It did so not necessarily because it loves Nigerians, but because of the undisguised resolve of the people to resist such unhelpful step,” Ajayi said, submitting that “what President Buhari can do as far as petroleum in the country is concerned, is to get the refineries working. It should also bring the prices of kerosene, petrol, diesel and gas down considerably.”
EARLIER before the announcement by the Federal Government, Femi Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria
(SAN), had warned the administration of President Buhari to drop the plan to remove subsidies on petroleum products.
Falana, who is the Interim Chair, Alliance on Surviving COVID-19 and Beyond, described the planned subsidy removal as anti-people, warning that the Buhari administration should jettison the plan in the public interest or be prepared for a popular uprising.
The senior lawyer made this known in a statement titled, ‘Why Nigerians should join the anti-poverty rallies’.
Falana said it is very disappointing that the Buhari regime has concluded plans to remove subsidies on petroleum products after failing to hasten the implementation of the autogas project.
The statement partly read: “Having failed to fast-track the implementation of the autogas project, the Buhari administration has concluded plans to increase the price of PMS notwithstanding its reverberating effect on the cost of goods and services in the country.
“Another justification for increase is that it will curb the smuggling of fuel from Nigeria to neighbouring countries. The implication is that the people of Nigeria are being punished for the criminal activities of smugglers.
“Since the actions of the Federal Government cannot be justified we are therefore compelled to call on the economically marginalised Nigerian people to participate in the rallies scheduled to hold throughout the country on January 27 and February 1, 2022, at the instance of the NLC as well as the progressive extraction of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs).
“The victims of the neoliberal economic policies of the Federal Government have nothing to lose but their chains.
“Since the rallies are designed to warn the Federal Government to stop further provoking the Nigerian people, it is hoped that all anti people’s economic policies will be jettisoned in the public interest. Otherwise, the regime should be prepared for a popular uprising if it goes ahead to remove the so-called full subsidy or under-recovery in June 2022, or thereafter.”
Shell Companies Contribute To Nigeria’s Economic Growth, Creates Employment
…paid $3.5 billion in production entitlements, royalties, fees, and taxes
Nigeria’s natural resources offer attractive investment opportunities and significant potential for Nigerians to boost their economy
Rashidat Olushola Okunlade Writes
Shell Companies in Nigeria have been contributing to economic growth in Nigeria by generating revenue for the government through taxes, creating employment opportunities, and contributing to the development of local businesses.
In 2021, Shell Companies in Nigeria directly employed 2,500 people, 97% of whom were Nigerian nationals. More than 8,500 contractors supported our operations during the year.
Shell Companies in Nigeria awarded contracts worth $800 million (the same as in 2020) to Nigerian-registered companies, of which 92% were to companies where the Nigerian ownership was at least 51%.
The latest country-by-country tax data available is for 2020 and can be found in the Shell Tax
Contribution Report. In 2020, Shell’s business in Nigeria collected and paid a total of $3.5 billion in production entitlements, royalties, fees, and taxes. Some tax numbers are available for 2021: SPDC paid $424 million and SNEPCo paid $562 million in corporate tax and payments to the government.
Shell Companies in Nigeria are investing in expanding offshore oil and gas production and developing infrastructure for domestic and export gas. These projects and assets will continue to bring employment and contract opportunities to Nigerians and their businesses.
Security Challenges Onshore Production: Shell Companies in Nigeria have a track record of strong production. But in 2021, the combined production from the SPDC JV and SNEPCo (Bonga) fell to 493,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day from 614,000 in 2020.
The SPDC JV produced 383,000 barrels of oil equivalent in 2021, compared with 497,000 barrels of oil equivalent in 2020. The fall in output was largely a result of curtailed oil production because of heightened security issues, such as crude oil theft and illegal oil refining. Production numbers were also down as a result of divestment action, including the sale of SPDC’s 30% interest in OML 17 for $533 million.
In the last quarter of 2021, crude oil theft from pipelines across the region increased ostensibly as a result of rising oil prices, which made the activity more profitable. Security risks have heightened and production in some areas has been put on hold. The situation is impacting operators across the Niger Delta. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has reported that crude thefts in 2021 reached 200,000 barrels per day-a quarter of onshore production.
The SPDC JV declared a force majeure on its Bonny export program with effect from March 3, 2022. The declaration of force majeure was on account of significantly lower deliveries of crude oil to the Bonny Terminal because of theft from illegal connections to pipelines.
Offshore in the deep waters of the Gulf of Guinea, production at SNEPCo’s Bonga field continued steadily but not without its own challenges. Production fell to 110,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day from 117,000 barrels in 2020. This was because of repairs on two production lines in 2021.
The five-year average production for SPDC and SNEPCo is 606,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.
Shell Companies in Nigeria stated its intention to reduce its involvement in onshore oil and gas production in Nigeria and to focus future investment on our deep-water and gas positions. This aligns with Shell’s Powering Progress strategy. We are in discussion with the Nigerian government and other stakeholders on how this can be best achieved.
Focus on Safety and Security: Shell Companies in Nigeria aim to consistently apply international safety standards. We work closely with communities, civil society, local businesses, joint- and co-venture partners, as well as federal and state government agencies, to promote a secure and safe environment. Shell Companies in Nigeria aim to achieve no harm to people and no leaks across operations.
Shell Companies in Nigeria also contribute to the safety of communities around their facilities by responding to third-party emergencies in these communities. These incidents include fires near our facilities. In 2021, Shell Companies in Nigeria responded to 32 third-party emergencies.
Tragically, six people working for a contractor company were killed in 2021 when gunmen attacked a convoy of buses traveling to the Assa North/Ohaji South gas development project site. A government security agent was also killed in the incident and seven other people were injured. This was a truly horrendous event.
SPDC, in its capacity as operator of the SPDC JV, and its employees, feel these losses deeply and, together with government security agencies, learn from such incidents to help prevent them from happening again. SPDC immediately stopped work on the site. Work will resume when we are satisfied that security has been restored around the project site. SPDC has supported the contractor during the emergency response and follow-on investigations.
Developing Gas Opportunities: Nigeria has around 200 trillion cubic feet of proven gas reserves and about 600 trillion cubic feet of unproven reserves. However, a lack of adequate power grid infrastructure results in unreliable power supply from the electricity grid and power shortages in urban and rural areas. The development of energy infrastructure is a priority for the country.
Nigeria has declared 2021-2030 the “Decade of Gas Development for Nigeria” and is determined to develop the gas sector to transform the country into an industrialised nation. Gas has enormous potential to diversify and lift the Nigerian economy.
Shell is investing in a gas portfolio that will increase supply for Nigeria’s growing industrial and commercial sectors, as well as international customers via an expanding network of plants, pipelines and export terminals. Shell has interests in two gas supply operations in Nigeria: NLNG and SNG. Both are supplied with gas by the SPDC JV and SNEPCo.
However, Nigeria needs to create an enabling environment to continue to foster investments in the gas sector.
According to Ed Ubong, SNG Managing Director and President of the Nigeria Gas Association, an enabling environment rests on the development of infrastructure across the gas value chain and a predictable regulatory, commercial and legal framework. He also states that all stakeholders need to uphold contracts and that resolving the security challenges in the Niger Delta is critical if Nigeria is to benefit from the “decade of gas”.
Shell Energy Nigeria To Grow SNG’s Customer Base Further: Nigeria has a population of more than 200 million and this is expected to double by 20505, so there is enormous potential to expand businesses within the domestic gas market. In 2021, on the back of the successes of SNG, Shell launched the Shell Energy Nigeria (SEN) business line. SEN aims to grow Shell’s natural gas marketing and sales business in Nigeria.
In 2021, SNG supplied more than 400 megawatts (MW) equivalent of gas-generated power in Nigeria. SEN’s goal is to distribute 1 billion cubic feet of gas in the domestic market by 2030.
SNG has a distribution network of 150 kilometers and is the only gas distribution company in Nigeria certified according to the ISO14001 international standard for an effective environmental management system. In 2021, it provided gas to more than 130 commercial and industrial customers.
In 2021, SNG signed a 20-year agreement for the domestic distribution of gas to industrial customers and manufacturing plants in Lagos and Ogun States. The new deal with the Nigerian Gas Marketing Company (NGMC) will also enable SNG to extend its distribution network to Badagry to serve a new market in the community that borders the Republic of Benin.
By the end of 2021, SNG had agreements in place with 165 customers across six states: Ogun, Abia, Rivers, Bayelsa, Oyo, and Lagos. The agreements will enable the supply of reliable, lower-carbon energy that drives industrialisation, provides employment for both the skilled and unskilled local population, as well as directly improve internally generated revenues in these states. Infrastructure is being built to supply gas to new customers where necessary as SNG was actually providing gas to around 130 customers at the time of writing this report.
Gas Partnership with Government: The SPDC JV has long produced oil in the Niger Delta but it also supplies about 10% of Nigeria’s domestic natural gas. Today, it aims to produce more natural gas and is working with the government and NNPC on developing four of the government’s seven designated critical gas supply projects. These are the Assa North/Ohaji South field; the four unitised gas fields – Samabri-Biseni, Akri-Oguta, Ubie-Oshi, and Afuo-Ogbainbri; Gas Supply to Brass Fertilizer Company; and Okpokunou/Tuomo West field cluster.
Construction of the Assa North/Ohaji South gas development project in Imo state started in 2019. However, the project was put on hold in August after the security incident described above. Prior to the suspension of the project, Assa North/Ohaji South was expected to be completed in 2023 with a potential capacity of 300 million standard cubic feet of gas per day, one of the largest domestic gas projects in Nigeria.
The other three projects are in the early stages and investment decisions have not yet been taken.
In 2021, the SPDC JV-operated AFAM VI power plant in the Oyigbo local government area of Rivers State supplied 7% of Nigeria’s grid-connected electricity. AFAM VI has a nameplate capacity of 650 megawatts (MW) but in 2021 operated between 250MW and 350MW depending on grid allocations. The SPDC JV’s Gbaran-Ubie gas plant achieved peak production in 2021 with about 182,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.
Ending Routine Flaring: Shell Companies in Nigeria are working towards their goal of ending the routine flaring of associated gas from their oil production operations. They have made a series of investments and partnerships over the last 20 years to capture and supply associated gas for domestic and export markets.
In 2019, the Southern Swamp Associated Gas Solutions project was commissioned, and the SPDC JV is planning to reduce associated gas flaring further through its Forcados Yokri gas-gathering project, of which large parts are set to be completed in 2022.
Despite such efforts to reduce continuous flaring, unfortunately flaring intensity (the amount of gas flared for every tonne of oil and gas produced) at both SPDC- and SNEPCo-operated facilities increased in 2021 owing to short-term operational issues.
Flaring from SPDC-operated facilities increased by around 5% in 2021 compared with 2020.
The increase was primarily because of the extended outage of the gas compression system in SPDC’s shallow-water operations. The system was restored and became operational in January 2022.
Flaring at SNEPCo-operated facilities rose by around 160% in 2021 compared with 2020. This was mainly because of an increase in flaring on the Bonga floating production, storage, and offloading (FPSO) vessel. Repairs to a flex-joint on the Bonga FPSO’s gas export riser in the second quarter took longer than expected, in part because of weather conditions. While repairs were underway, the FPSO continued to produce oil, and therefore flaring was necessary for safety reasons. The repairs were safely concluded in July 2021.
Although flaring intensity levels rose in 2021, SPDC and SNEPCo over the last 10 years have almost halved the combined amount of hydrocarbons they flare from 1.5 million tonnes in 2012 to 0.8 million tonnes in 2021. This reduction is the result of a strict flaring reduction management process and both SPDC and SNEPCo will continue to work in close collaboration with joint-venture partners and the government to make progress toward ending routine
flaring of associated gas.
Nigeria LNG Expansion Underway: Global demand for LNG continues to grow as the world increasingly seeks reliable supplies of lower-carbon energy. Shell’s investment in Nigeria’s gas infrastructure for export is expected to help. This is according to data provided by global research and consultancy business Wood Mackenzie. the country benefits further from revenues. Shell Gas B.V. and its partners took a final investment decision in 2020 on a new LNG processing unit-known as Train 7 at NLNG.
The expansion is expected to create around 12,000 jobs for Nigerians during construction and stimulate the growth of the local oil and gas service sector, with 55% of engineering and procurement of goods and services being sourced in-country. Train 7 is expected to ensure Nigeria’s continued place as a global player in a lower-carbon energy source.
Once operational, Train 7 will add around 8 million tonnes per annum of capacity to the Bonny Island LNG facility, taking the total production to around 30 million tonnes per annum.
In 2021, NLNG began awarding procurement and construction contracts. Early works started at the site. The first phase of the worker village is expected to be ready for occupancy in 2022 and the new material offloading facility ready for use by the end of 2022. NLNG’s Train 7 is expected to come on stream in the middle of the 2020s.
Key Licence Renewed for Deep-Water: SNEPCo has interests in four deep-water blocks in the Gulf of Guinea, two of which it operates. Today, nearly one-third of Nigeria’s deep-water oil and gas production comes from the Bonga and the non-operated Erha fields.
Since production began in 2005, Bonga alone has produced more than 950 million barrels of oil with the 2021 average oil production per day at 105,000 barrels. The Bonga FPSO vessel has a total production capacity of 225,000 barrels of oil per day and 150 standard cubic feet of gas exported per day. In 2021, the availability of the FPSO vessel increased to 80% from 70% in 2020.
In addition to Bonga, SNEPCo’s exploration activities have led to several significant discoveries of oil and gas over the last two decades, including the Bolia and Doro fields (Shell interest 55%).
In the right investment climate, SNEPCo believes that there are opportunities to expand. In 2021 the OML 118 (Bonga) production-sharing contract was renewed and the lease was extended for 20 years. Bonga North and Bonga South West Aparo (BSWA) oil fields are two such potential opportunities. Bonga North is a proposed tie-back project to the existing Bonga FPSO with Phase 1 comprising 14 wells. BSWA is a development of a new FPSO with Phase 1 comprising 23 wells.
Supporting Renewable Energy Startups: Millions of Nigerians are excluded from the country’s power grid and Shell Companies in Nigeria have established and provided substantial funding for a not-for-profit, an impact-investing company called All On. Operating as an independent company, All On works to bring reliable electricity – often from renewable energy sources — to off-grid urban and rural customers. This support aims to build a solid pipeline of viable businesses that can create the scale required to address Nigeria’s access to energy gap.
In December 2019, SPDC and SNEPCo made a significant additional 10-year financing commitment of $160 million in All On, bringing the total commitment to $200 million. By the end of 2021, All On had provided investment capital to over 40 renewable energy start-ups in its portfolio – an increase of more than 30% from 2020. One such company is Infibranches Technologies Limited, to which All On has committed $2 million, which is expected to enable the indigenous technology company to expand sales of solar home systems via its more than 13,000 agent banking partners across Nigeria.
With the support of the Rockefeller Foundation, the All On Hub was established in 2020 to provide nonfinancial support and build the capabilities of off-grid energy entrepreneurs. In 2021, the hub supported 81 ventures – nearly double the 41 supported in 2020.
Also in 2021, All On, Odyssey Energy Solutions, and the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet launched a $10 million equipment financing facility as part of the DART pilot program in Nigeria. DART will combine demand pooling, aggregated purchasing of solar equipment, and access to affordable finance to unlock economies of scale for solar companies, achieve cost savings for end-users, and accelerate the growth of the renewable energy sector in Nigeria and beyond.
Developing Local Content and Skills: Shell Companies in Nigeria contribute to the growth of Nigerian businesses that can provide technical and support services to the industry. This includes the manufacture of tools and technical kits, the operation of helicopter flights in the Niger Delta, and strategic partnerships between foreign and local companies to stimulate technology transfer and capacity development.
While there are government-required programmes in some areas, such as the Nigerian and Community Content Strategy embedded in the Assa North/Ohaji South gas development project, Shell Companies in Nigeria deliberately seeks to contract local businesses
In 2021, Shell Companies in Nigeria awarded $800 million worth of contracts to Nigerian registered companies. Of these, 92% were companies with at least 51% Nigerian ownership.
SNEPCo has awarded major engineering and construction contracts to companies that are indigenous, have local staff, or possess domestic capabilities in the country. At present, the manufacture and rebuild of hydraulic flying leads7 (HFLs) are being carried out in-country by wholly indigenous companies. Pressure Controls Systems Nigeria Limited, another Nigerian company, continues to refurbish old subsea trees.
Sometimes, a lack of access to capital hinders Nigerian companies from competing for and executing contracts effectively. Shell Companies in Nigeria have provided access to nearly $1.6 billion in loans to 901 Nigerian vendors under the Shell Contractor Support Fund since 2012. These loans help improve their tendering opportunities.
Shell Advances In Gas Distribution, Deep-Water Exploration, And Production
…Helping to power Nigeria’s economy
Olushola Okunlade Writes
The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) has invested in businesses in Nigeria for more than 60 years and has shown growth interests in several companies that produce, distribute, and export oil, gas, and liquefied natural gas (LNG), and other energy products.
The Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Limited (SNEPCo) produces oil and gas in the deep waters of the Gulf of Guinea. Shell Nigeria Gas Limited (SNG) provides gas to industrial and commercial customers.
Three businesses are ultimately wholly owned by Shell Plc and together are known as the Shell
Companies in Nigeria (SCiN): The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) has a 30% share in the SPDC joint venture (SPDC JV) which produces oil and gas in the Niger Delta.
The SPDC JV has 16 Niger Delta onshore oil mining leases (OML) after the completion of the sale of its interest in OML 17 on January 15, 2021.
SPDC also has three shallow-water licenses (OMLs 74, 77, and 79) and a 40% interest in the non-Shell-operated Sunlink joint venture that has one shallow-water license (OML 144).
SNEPCo has interests in two Shell-operated deep-water blocks: Bonga (OML 118 – 55% interest) and Bolia/Doro (OML 135 – 55% interest).
SNEPCo also has an interest in the non-operated deep-water block: Erha (OML 133 – 43.75% interest). SNEPCo’s license for the non-operated Zabazaba block (OPL-245) expired in 2021.
Osagie Okunbor, Country Chairman of Shell Companies in Nigeria recalls last year’s achievement “I stand in awe of the sheer grit and determination of our staff and contractors that have enabled us to achieve most of our business goals despite the challenges that we have faced and continue to face. The year has so many success stories, including how we are advancing our ambitions in gas distribution and deep-water exploration and production.
“However, Shell Companies in Nigeria, like other operators, have suffered from a growing number of sabotage attacks on our oil wells and pipelines, as well as the rising levels of crude oil theft. This forced us to declare a force majeure on our Bonny export program, effective March 3, 2022. Now is the time to remind ourselves of a stark reality: the theft of crude oil is also the theft of jobs and opportunity. The illegal actions of third parties are robbing Nigeria’s economy of billions of dollars and this must end. I am also saddened by an unprecedented tragedy.
“In August 2021, gunmen attacked a convoy of buses carrying workers to the Assa North/Ohaji South gas project. They killed six contract workers and one government security agent. Seven others were injured. My thoughts and those of Shell are with the families who have lost their loved ones. We provided emergency support immediately after the attack and assisted in the investigation. I hope we never again witness such a horrific incident.
Shell Value Their Communities: Despite the security challenges we face, Shell Companies in Nigeria continue to contribute positively to the communities where we do business. Alongside
our long-standing health-care, education, enterprise development, and community-led programs, we have financially supported the purchase of vaccines for Nigeria through COVAX and we have launched awareness-raising and vaccination campaigns.
The highest concentration of direct social investment in 2021 within the Group was made in Nigeria. As a development partner with a strong belief in Nigeria, we will continue to support the country’s aspirations toward achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
Shell is making advances within the access-to-energy space. All On, a not-for-profit, impact investment company to which SPDC and SNEPCo have committed around $200 million, has helped renewable energy start-ups to connect 45,000 off-grid customers and aims to increase this to 75,000 in 2022. All On, together with Odyssey Energy Solutions and the Global Alliance for People and Planet also launched a global procurement program for renewable energy
companies to help bring affordable, high-quality solar products to the Nigerian communities most in need.
“On behalf of Shell Companies in Nigeria, I congratulate All On for winning the 2021 impact investor of the year award in Nigeria conferred by the Impact Investors Foundation. I am also very proud to announce the completion of the Oloibiri Health Campus in the Ogbia area of Bayelsa State. Oloibiri holds a special place in the heart of Shell Companies in Nigeria because it is where we discovered oil many decades ago. The campus will be commissioned later in 2022 and includes a primary healthcare facility and a centre for specialist health services.
Shell’s relationship with Nigeria is strong, Shell has announced its intention to review options for its onshore Nigeria portfolio but Shell’s relationship with Nigeria remains strong. We may be changing the content of our portfolio but this is because we intend to focus future investment in Nigeria on deep-water exploration and production, and expanding our gas distribution network for domestic and international customers.
In 2021, the Bonga field’s oil mining lease (OML) 118 and its production sharing contract (PSC) were renewed for another 20 years. This lease underpins our deep-water operations. Its renewal opens up further opportunities for Shell in Nigeria. We also successfully launched the Shell Energy Nigeria business line to expand the gas distribution solutions being championed by SNG. I am confident that this move will extend the efforts of Shell in delivering gas for power and industrial use across the country.
Natural gas is a critical component of Nigeria’s economy and is very significant for the country’s energy transition. The growing global market for LNG is also driving the development of Nigeria LNG’s expansion with the construction of Train 7, which will
increase production capacity by 35% from the current 22 million to 30 million tonnes a year.
Recognition for Shell Companies in Nigeria Shell Companies in Nigeria received a number of accolades in 2021. For example, in May, we were named the International Oil Company with the most impactful Local Content Initiatives at the Nigerian Oil and Gas Opportunity Fair. In December, Nigeria’s Tertiary Education Trust Fund described the consistent contributions of SNEPCo to education in Nigeria as exemplary and worthy of emulation by other corporates.
Looking ahead, I hope that the business environment remains conducive to existing and new investors. I have no doubt that Nigeria, Nigerians, and my colleagues across Shell Companies in Nigeria will face whatever they must with the same compassion, dignity, and resilience that they have always shown, Okunbor concluded.
In addition, Shell Gas B.V. holds a 25.6% shareholding in Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) which produces and exports LNG to European and other markets. SPDC and SNEPCo also own All On Partnerships for Energy Access Limited (All On), a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee for the purpose of improving access to energy in Nigeria.
For more than 60 years, Shell has invested in Nigeria’s economy and the Nigerian people. Together, they have built robust oil and gas businesses and contributed to neighboring communities. Shell’s commitment remains strong, even as the content of our asset portfolio changes. Shell also announced a review of our Nigerian onshore oil investments.
Deep-water exploration and production in the Gulf of Guinea, where the renewal of the OML 118 license for 20 years has opened up further opportunities; and Expansion of the gas supply and distribution network within Nigeria and to international markets.
These ambitions align with Shell’s Powering Progress strategy and support Nigeria’s vision to provide reliable, affordable power to its people. In 2021, Nigeria continued to receive the largest concentration of social investment in Shell. Our healthcare and education programs helped thousands more people over the last year. We continue to work to bring energy to off-grid communities through All On, our not-for-profit impact investment company.
We will continue to clean up oil spills, despite the challenges arising from the illegal actions of third parties, such as sabotage and crude oil theft. The clean-up and remediation in the Ogoniland community of Bodo have made solid progress, with around 60% of the area remediated and 300,000 mangrove seedlings planted.
The Powering Progress: Powering Progress sets out Shell’s strategy to accelerate the transition of its business to net-zero emissions. It is designed to create value for our shareholders, customers, and wider society. Powering Progress has four main goals in support of Shell’s purpose, to power progress together by providing more and cleaner energy solutions. It is underpinned by our core values and focus on safety.
It has four main goals: achieving net-zero emissions, powering lives, respecting nature, and generating shareholder value.
2021 Key Developments Financial Sheet: Shell Companies in Nigeria spent $800 million on
contracts with Nigerian-registered companies which is the same level as 2020 spending.
$986 million in corporate taxes and royalties paid to the Federal Government of Nigeria (SPDC $424 million and SNEPCo $562 million), compared with $900 million in 2020.
The SPDC JV, SNEPCo, and SNG spent $33.82 million in direct social investment, compared with $49.4 million in 2020. The decline is largely because, in 2020, significant contributions were made to COVID-19-specific programs supporting communities impacted by the onset of the pandemic.
The SPDC JV, in compliance with statutory requirements, paid $38.7 million in 2021 to the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). SNEPCo and its co-ventures paid $23 million
to the NDDC.
Combined production from SPDC and SNEPCo (Bonga) declined to 493,000 barrels of oil equivalent, compared with 614,000 barrels of oil equivalent in 2020. The decline was largely a result of divestment action and activity curtailment due to heightened security issues in the Niger Delta.
Shell Companies in Nigeria directly employed 2,500 people (of whom 97% were Nigerian nationals) with more than 8,500 contractors supporting operations.
Business Developments: Shell Energy Nigeria was established to focus on gas, power, renewables, and energy solutions for industrial and commercial customers.
SNG, the domestic gas distribution entity of the Shell Energy Nigeria business line, continues to expand and has signed agreements to deliver gas to around 165 corporate customers.
SNG provides gas to more than 130 commercial and industrial customers, at the time of writing. Infrastructure is being built to enable the delivery of gas to new customers.
SNEPCo, its OML 118 partners, and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) extended the OML 118 production-sharing contract (PSC) license for another 20 years, further incentivising the development of the OML 118 block and opening opportunities in Nigeria’s deep waters.
NLNG Train 7 early works, including engineering, procurement, and construction activities, have ramped up. SPDC completed the sale of its 30% interest in OML 17 for $533 million.
Shell has announced its intention to reduce its involvement in onshore oil and gas production in Nigeria and will continue to develop its deep-water oil and gas production and its gas supply businesses for domestic use and export.
Social Investment: The All On impact investment company increased the size of its total portfolio of renewable, energy access investee companies from 31 to more than 40, and the All On Hub increased its supported businesses from 41 to 81 ventures.
All On, together with Odyssey Energy Solutions and the Global Alliance for People and Planet, launched the Demand Aggregation for Renewable Technology (DART) program to bring affordable, high quality solar products to communities most in need.
Community Health Insurance Scheme added 8,180 people. More than 85,000 people have been enrolled across the Niger Delta since its launch in 2010. The scheme is a partnership between the SPDC JV, Rivers State Government, and local communities.
The health-in-Motion mobile community health outreach program added 2,451 people.
More than one million people across the Niger Delta have benefited since 2010.
The SPDC JV renewed five Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) agreements to provide secure funding for community-led development programs and also deployed one new agreement. Over $98.6 million was disbursed over the last five years.
The SPDC JV and SNEPCo invested $6.2 million in education programs. More than 2,500 secondary school grants, over 3,200 university grants and 900 Cradle-to-Career scholarship
grants have been made since 2016.
The SPDC JV has delivered the first phase of a $5 million infrastructure project to the Nigeria Maritime University (NMU), Okerenkoko, Warri, Delta State.
The global Shell LiveWIRE entrepreneurship program helped 190 Nigerians through training and grants.
Spills and Clean-up: SPDC JV operational spills: nine1 incidents of more than 100 kilograms of crude oil compared with 12 incidents in 2020. The total volume of 29 tonnes of spilled crude was slightly less than the 30 tonnes reported in 2020.
Spills from illegal activities: 1062 incidents with volume of 3.3 thousand tonnes, compared with 122 incidents in 2020, with a volume of 1.5 thousand tonnes. The doubling of the volume was mainly attributable to one incident, caused by sabotage, which accounted for 2.3 thousand tonnes of crude oil. This was contained and around 90% recovered and returned to the system.
Ogoniland: Clean-up led by the government agency, Hydrocarbon Pollution, and Remediation Project (HYPREP). In 2021, remediation was completed and certified on nine sites; work continues on 11 sites.
Bodo: By the end of 2021, remediation was completed 60% of the clean-up area with around 300,000 mangrove seedlings planted so far out of the required 2 million seedlings that are planned by the end of 2025.
Nigeria is core to Shell’s business strategy, Shell remains committed to Nigeria and its people and has done business in the country for more than 60 years.
Like other multinationals, Shell continually seeks to enhance its portfolio of assets through selective investments and divestments in order to return value to shareholders.
Over the last decade, SPDC has reduced its licences in the Niger Delta by half and in 2021 completed the sale of its 30% interest in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 17 in the Eastern Niger Delta. Options for the remaining onshore portfolio are under consideration.
Security issues, sabotage, and crude oil theft in the Niger Delta remained significant challenges to our onshore operations in 2021. We continue to monitor the situation closely and evaluate implications for the integrity of our infrastructure and the sustainability of the SPDC JV’s operations.
Shell also announced their intention to review material portfolio options for onshore Nigeria, in line with our intent to focus future investment in Nigeria on our deep-water and gas positions. The company is in discussions with the Nigerian government and other stakeholders on how this can best be achieved.
Despite the required portfolio rebalancing, which is in line with Shell’s Powering Progress Strategy, Nigeria remains core for Shell and we will continue our investments in deep-water and gas.
Shell Recognition and Awards: In 2021 Shell Companies in Nigeria received numerous awards in recognition of their contribution to the country. Among these are:
YEAR AWARDING ORGANISATION AWARD TITLE/DESCRIPTION UNIT SCIN COMPANY
2021 – NCDMB NOGOF – The most impactful local content in the upstream category – SCiN
2021 – TETFUND – Tertiary Education Trust Fund – SNEPCo
2021 – SAIPEC – Health Safety and Environment (HSE) Company of the Year – SCiN
2021 – NOG – Women in Leadership of the Year Award – SNEPCo
2021 – FIRS – (Federal Inland Revenue Service) Remarkable Performance in Remittance of the various Taxes in 2021 Tax year – Shell
2021 – FIRS (Federal Inland Revenue Service) One of the best Tax Compliant Organization in Nigeria for 2021 Tax Year – Shell
2021 – NIES – Upstream company of the year 2021 – Shell
2021 – Nigeria International Energy Summit (NIES) Women in Energy award – SNEPCo
2021 – Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) In recognition of Shell’s contribution to powering industries in Nigeria and for its long partnership with MAN over the years – SNG
We Are Working Towards Sustainable Industrialization Of Nigeria – NCDMB
Olushola Okunlade Writes
The NCDMB aims at achieving this through patriotism, professionalism, and commitment to its Expatriate Quota Management, EQM, initiative.
The Executive Secretary, NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote, who disclosed this at the stakeholders’ sensitization workshop on EQM, an initiative for companies in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry in Lagos, Wednesday, noted that the initiative falls under the medium-term plan of the NCDMB’s 10-year Strategic Road Map.
Engr. Wabote, who was represented by the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics, Mr. Daziba Obah, said: “On behalf of the Executive Secretary, NCDMB. I am highly delighted to welcome you all to this stakeholders sensitization workshop on the Expatriate Quota Management initiative for companies in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry.
“As a reputable Board, our Vision statement is to be the instrument for the industrialization of Nigeria. We hope to achieve this through an uncanny display of patriotism, integrity, team spirit, professionalism, creativity, and passion. In addition, as part of the Board’s 10-year strategic Road Map and implementation plan, the EQM initiative falls under the medium-term (3-5 year plan) of the 10-year Strategic Road Map.
“This event has been put together to create awareness and extend the EQ management initiatives to companies in the Nigerian Oil & Gas Industry and other agencies of government: The government agencies invited for the workshop are the Ministry of Interior (MOI), Nigerian Immigration Services (NIS), Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), Nigerian Midstream & Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), & Nigerian Maritime Administration & Safety Agency (NIMASA).”
According to him, “The main thrust of the stakeholders’ sensitization workshop was to showcase the features on the NOGIC-JQS portal to the industry stakeholders, take the stakeholders through the different modules to address various issues of concerns in using the NOGIC-JQS portal, and provide an opportunity to educate the industry stakeholders of the possible benefits of using the NOGIC JQS platform.”
He maintained that it was also aimed at, “Presenting an opportunity to inform the industry stakeholders of the need for constant update of their JQS profile accounts, Present an opportunity to interact with the industry stakeholders on the possible ways to gather quality data through the JQS platform, extend Expatriate Quota Management initiative to companies operating in the Oil and Gas Industry & strengthen compliance with the NOGICD-ACT 2010 and discuss Expatriate Quota application process, Temporary Work Permit processes, Expatriate Biometric Data Capture Scheme, 1% NCDF Remittancesvia the NOGIC-JQS portal and any other issue of concerns.”
He also explained that “The Nigerian Oil and Gas Content Industry Joint Qualification System (NOGICJQS) is the industry databank for available capacities and capabilities used for the Nigerian Content registration and pre-qualification of contractors in the industry; verification of contractors’ capacities and capabilities; evaluation of the application of Nigerian Content in the operations of oil companies and contractors; database for national skills development; and ranking and categorization of service companies based on capacities and Nigerian Content.
“Equally important is the automation of some of the Board’s business processes via our NOGIC-JQS platform, which included, “Expatriate Quota Management Module- EQ, TWP & Exchange Program, Tender Management Module, NCEC Management Module, Marine Vessel Management Module, and Whistle Blower Module.”
Bukka Hut Mourns Co-Owner, Late Olaolu Martins
Sterling’s Unify To Digitize Nigerian Higher Education With Africa EDUCare
NCC-CSIRT Proffers Countermeasures Against Website Scams On Microsoft Edge Browser
NNPC Board Chairman Commends Nigeria’s Participation At OTC 2022
Seplat Energy Appoints Ezugworie As COO, Executive Director Board
Exclusive Interview: Microfinance Bank As Catalyst for MSME Development in Nigeria
Energy5 months ago
NNPC Board Chairman Commends Nigeria’s Participation At OTC 2022
Energy3 months ago
Seplat Energy Appoints Ezugworie As COO, Executive Director Board
Money Market1 year ago
Exclusive Interview: Microfinance Bank As Catalyst for MSME Development in Nigeria
Business9 months ago
Institute For Tourism Professionals Elected Otunba Ayo Olumoko As Zonal Vice President
Business1 year ago
NGX CEO Temi Popoola, Others Attend CIS Investiture Ceremony
News1 year ago
CIBN President Bayo Olugbemi, Team, Visit Redeemers’ University, Ede
Energy1 year ago
Olusegun Mojeed Appointed As First Deputy Secretary General
Energy4 months ago
Seplat Energy Appoint Basil Omiyi, And Charles Okeahalam To Board Of Directors