Nigeria’s crude oil output increased in the month of June despite the incessant bombings of oil installations by militants in the Niger Delta region, the July 2016 report of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries has shown.
Specifically, the country’s crude oil output increased by 97,000 barrels per day, up from a total of 1.426 million barrels per day that was recorded in April to 1.523 million bpd in June, according to OPEC.
The country has been battling militants in the Niger Delta, who are bent on crippling the economy through the continued destruction of oil installations in the region.
On Saturday, one of the militant groups that emerged since renewed militancy in the region began, the Ultimate Warriors of Niger Delta, declared that it had nothing to lose if oil production was disrupted.
But OPEC, while giving a breakdown of crude oil production based on secondary sources, stated that Nigeria’s crude exports in June contributed in increasing the total amount of crude production by the 14-member cartel in the month under review.
“According to secondary sources, total OPEC-14 crude oil production averaged 32.86 million bpd in June, an increase of 264,000 bpd over the previous month. Crude oil output increased mostly from Nigeria, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Libya and the UAE, while production showed declines in Venezuela and Iraq,” it stated.
The latest revelation by OPEC has given credence to the statement by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, who earlier this month announced that Nigeria produced between 1.9 million bpd and 2.3 million bpd of crude oil.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event at the headquarters of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the minister told journalists, “We are doing 1.9 million barrels.”
He, however, described the activities of militants in the Niger Delta issue as “a big elephant in the room,” and stated that the government was trying to devise a model that would address the challenge in the region once and for all.
“We are trying to find a model that works finally for this country on the Niger Delta issue. The work is for everybody; it is not just solely mine, but it is on my door-step and we need to find those solutions so that we can have peace. It is key that we get all the stakeholders in the region in order to ensure development,” Kachikwu had said.