President Muhammadu Buhari has assured Nigerians and other stakeholders of his administration’s resolve to undertake reforms and implement fresh policies to boost national income from oil and gas production.
He gave the assurance when he met separately with delegations from Exxon- Mobil Oil Exploratory Company and the management of the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Company (NLNG) at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Tuesday.
According to the President, the envisaged reforms will include removal of bureaucratic bottlenecks created by multiple government agencies in the sector, which he stated have been impeding operations of players in the industry.
He also stated that his government will give priority attention to the security of installations as well as maritime security in its bid to boost national earnings from the sector.
“It is the responsibility of the Federal Government to secure the environment.
“The vandalism of oil installations and pipelines, piracy, oil theft and the fall in the international price of oil have made our economic situation very disturbing.
“This government will do all within its powers to secure the environment and encourage more investments in the oil sector,’’ President Buhari said, adding that his administration will ensure that Nigeria’s oil and gas industry quickly becomes more globally competitive.
Assuring the NLNG delegation of his administration’s full support for plans to expand the total production capacity of the company, the President regretted that political squabbles and interference in the past had prevented it from attaining its full potentials.
“Today, we are celebrating six trains. It could have been 12 trains if all had gone according to plan,” President Buhari said.
The NLNG delegation included the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Dr Joseph Dawha and the Managing Director of NLNG, Mr. Babs Omotowa.
Mr. Omotowa requested the President’s support for Train 7 of the NLNG, which, he said would create additional 18,000 construction jobs and an additional three billion dollars dividend to government when operational.
He also asked for the President’s intervention in reducing the number of multiple government agencies around the plant that have made its business globally uncompetitive.The Exxon-Mobil delegation was led by its Managing Director, Mr Nolan O’Neal.