$50bn Investments Lost In 10yrs Without Oil Sector Law, Says Buhari
Nigeria lost investments worth at least $50billion due to delayed passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) in the last 10 years, President Muhammadu Buhari said yesterday.
He spoke at Aso Villa yesterday at a meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly on the passage of the Bill which he signed into law on Monday.
The PIB lingered in the National Assembly about 20 years before its passage by the Ninth Assembly.
The President said: “We are all aware that past administrations have identified the need to further align the industry for global competitiveness, but there was a lack of political will to actualise this needed transformation.
“This lack of progress has stagnated the growth of the industry and the prosperity of our economy.
“In the past 10 years, Nigeria has lost an estimated US$50billion worth of investments due to uncertainty created by the non-passage of the PIB.
”This administration believes that the timely passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill will help our country attract investments across the oil and gas value chain.
“In view of the value our nation and investors will derive from a stable fiscal framework for the oil and gas industry, our administration has found it necessary to work with the two chambers of the National Assembly to ensure the passage of the PIB.”
He approved the implementation framework for the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021 and named the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Timipre Sylva as head of the steering committee.
The committee was given 12 months to complete the assignment.
Other members are Permanent Secretary, ministry of petroleum Resources; Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC); Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and representatives of the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
Others are Senior Special Assistant to the President on Natural Resources, Olufemi Lijadu as External Legal Adviser.
Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund, will serve as Head of the Coordinating Secretariat and the Implementation Working Group.
The steering committee will ensure that the new institutions created have the full capability to deliver on their mandate.
President Buhari described the passage of the PIB into law as the “end of decades of uncertainty and under-investment in the petroleum industry”.
He said: “To consolidate the commitment of this administration to delivering the value proposition of this law, I have approved an implementation framework commencing immediately to ensure the industry envisaged in the new law begins to take shape.
“The implementation process to be headed by the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, is hereby tasked with the completion of the implementation of this Act within 12 months.
”I am, therefore, directing all relevant ministries, departments and agencies of government to fully cooperate in ensuring the successful and timely implementation of this law.”
The President said Nigeria lost an estimated $50 billion worth of oil and gas industry investments in 10 years due to uncertainties created by the failure to pass the PIB.