By Kingsley Jeremiah,
Stakeholders seek expansion
The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) yesterday said that local content in the oil and gas sector would hit 70 per cent, with hope that it would help the government to save $10 billion yearly.
At the 12th edition of the HSSE Forum, which focused on “Nigerian Content Development: Facing The Future”, the Executive Secretary of the board, Simbi Wabote, said the projections were achievable in the next 10 years.
The Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act, which came out of decades of agitation for local value and benefits to Nigerians, has facilitated the growth of local content to 31 per cent.
Wabote, who noted that as much as $380 billion was going out of the country as capital flight when the content law was not in place, said that about 300,000 jobs would be generated in a decade under the new projections of the board.
According to him, the recent disruptions caused by COVID-19 pandemic should force Nigeria to prioritise local content development. Deputy Managing Director, Deep Water, Total Upstream Companies in Nigeria, Ahmadu-Kida Musa, said: “We believe in the development of local capacities and will continue to work with all stakeholders, especially the NCDMB to ensure sustainable economic development of Nigeria.”
He disclosed that the company makes a yearly expenditure of over $40 million on corporate social responsibility in Nigeria. Using EGINA FPSO as a testament of the company’s commitment to local content in Nigeria, Musa described the vessel as the largest in the TOTAL Group and the first to be fabricated and integrated in Nigeria with 77 per cent engineering man-hours done in-country. According to Musa, 100 per cent of the project management man-hours is being performed in Nigeria.
Managing Director of Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo), Bayo Ojulari, noted that recent executive order by the country is pushing the need for local content in other sectors of the economy.
He stressed the need for legislative backing to compel policy in construction, power, ICT and others. Ojulari, however, said that the fiscal instability and harsh operating environment in the country would affect the pace of investment, slowing down efforts to grow the industry.
He also decried lack of technology know-how, state of infrastructure and cost competitiveness. If local content is prioritised, Ojulari expects reduction in lifecycle cost of projects and assets.