NEITI Welcomes FG's Decision to Probe oil Theft

Paschal Emeka, Abuja

The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has commended the decision of the Federal Government to set up a Special Investigative Panel on Oil Theft and Losses in Nigeria.

A statement released by NEITI, signed by its Communications and Advocacy lead, Obiageli
Onuorah described the decision as bold, courageous and timely given the havoc oil theft has wrecked in oil production and the country’s revenue generation.

The agency’s Oil Theft Investigation Panel disclosed that from its industry reports, Nigeria lost 619.7 million barrels of crude oil valued at $46.16 billion or N16.25 trillion in twelve years from (2009 to 2020).

The losses were reportedly from theft and sabotage, based on information and data provided by an average of eight companies covered by the NEITI processes over the years.

NEITI in a statement said a ”breakdown of the losses shows that in 2009 when the agency commenced reporting of crude oil theft, Nigeria lost 69.49 million barrels valued at $4.31 billion. The figures for 2010, 2011 and 2012 revealed that 28.31 million, 38.61 million and 51.58 million barrels which were valued at $2.29 billion, $4.39 billion and $5.82 billion were lost respectively.

”The NEITI oil & gas industry reports for 2013 to 2020 also showed that the losses to crude oil theft did not abate as 78.30 million barrels valued at $8.55 billion was lost in 2013 alone. 2014 and 2015 witnessed combined losses of 67.29 million barrels valued at $5.57 billion. According to the NEITI reports.

”2016 recorded the highest losses of 101.05 million barrels, valued at $4.42 billion. Between 2017 & 2020, the NEITI reports indicated losses of 36.46million barrels ($1.99 billion) in 2017, 53.281 ($3.837billion) in 2018, 42.248million barrels ($2.772billion) in 2019 and 53.056million barrels ($2.21billion) in 2020. ”The combined value of these losses is 619.7 million barrels, amounting to $46.16 billion over a twelve-year period.

NEITI regretted that at a time Nigeria’s economy is largely dependent on oil revenues, some Nigerians would choose to collude with foreign nationals to steal and sabotage the main sources of revenue for the federation.

It charged the civil society, media, development partners and extractive companies to endeavour to provide reliable information and data to the oil theft investigation panel.

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