Highlights from OTC 2016
The Chairman of PETAN, Mr Bank-Anthony Okoroafor used the just-concluded OTC conference to restate PETAN’s commitment to developing the Seal of Quality and Competence in partnership with NNPC
He explained that it would help curb the rising incidence of companies without experiences executing contracts they do not have competences for through certification of skills. Also, he noted that, “in these times of cash crunch, high exchange rate and a slumped crude price it was very essential to ensure jobs are given to indigenous companies with proven capacities and capabilities”. He emphasized that, “exporting Nigerian jobs in the face of developed in-country capacities is criminal! It is against the law of the land.” Again, he added “we have companies that can deliver values from the wellheads to the tank farms and the entire value chain.”
Mr Okoroafor was also quoted saying, Nigeria lost an estimated $10 billion fresh investments which would have been sealed by lots of companies if the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) had been passed when oil price was over $100/ barrel.
Wondering why the Nigerian Content Fund (NCF) was not being disbursed to develop the industry and build capacities, he compared Nigerian government to their Korean counterparts and acknowledged that is one key area we have lagged behind a bid to grow the industry.
He further explained that the industry relies heavily on evolving technologies and innovations and this has necessitated the need for continued partnership with foreign firms by indigenous companies.
The PETAN helmsman also noted that there is need for aggressive exploration activities to identify reserves and to develop them in order to make up for the last 10 years when Nigeria failed to grow its reserves. Citing the barrage of complaints coming from the downstream sector, he noted it was due to a long neglect and that similar fate awaits the upstream if exploration and development activities do not resume in earnest.
On his part, the Vice Chairman of PETAN, Geoff Onuoha, stated that Nigerian indigenous companies were making attempts to ensure the full implementation of the country’s local content initiative.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources was represented by the Group Executive Director, Gas and Power, Mr Seidu Muhammad. He was quoted as saying, the Nigerian oil industry focus should be on discovering ways of cutting cost and improving efficiency. Also, he added that the new era is to focus on better ways of harnessing the oil and gas resources towards industrialization as against sale of crude just to earn foreign exchange.
The panelists identified areas with hidden potentials and enumerated ways to tap from them. They did not shy away from obvious challenges inherent in these opportunities but went on to proffer solutions. Some advocated for increased local content adherence by IOCs and for government to bring in urgent policy reforms on governance that can still grow the industry despite the downturn.
Also, the local content session witnessed experienced industry leaders recommend solutions to age-long comparative cost analysis between foreign and indigenous companies but now in the face of a cyclical price slump debacle. Calling for urgent need to grow capacities some recommended engagement in trainings and re-trainings to build capabilities, research and development, among others. Also, very distinguished personalities were recognized as they bagged awards at the gala night.
The exhibition was opened by NNPC’s Group Executive Director, Gas and Power, Mr Seidu Muhammad who led a team, comprising the PETAN boss, Mr Okoroafor and other inspecting delegates to every booth on display.
Like the regular ritual, the golf tourney was an opportunity for the busy c-suite executives to socialize and physically get back in shape ahead of their return to their usual busy schedules as OTC 2016 came to an end.