The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) in its latest report has revealed that Nigeria lost 42.25 million barrels of crude oil valued at $2.77 billion to oil theft in 2019.
The 2019 report contains information from 98 organizations which includes 88 oil and gas companies, 9 government agencies and the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Company.
The disclosure is contained in the report on oil and gas presented to the media and civil society organizations by Mr. George Abiye, the Assistant Director, Oil and Gas, NEITI, on Tuesday, July 13, 2021.
According to the report, Nigeria earned $34.22 billion from the oil and gas sector in 2019, a 4.88% increase over the $32.63 billion realized in 2018.
NEITI in its report said that Nigeria could have earned more revenue if not for crude oil losses due to metering error, theft and sabotage in the year under review.
The report, however, noted that at 21%, the loss was 11.03% lower than that recorded in 2018, which was 53.28 million barrels.
It also stated that the losses were incurred by companies that conveyed crude volumes through pipelines that were easily compromised by saboteurs.
The report, therefore, recommended that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) should ensure proper surveillance (land-based, and aerial satellite photography and geophones-trenched pipelines), including updating its pipeline networks to minimize vandalism and crude oil theft.
The report also advised the Federal Government to ensure the success of oil and gas industrial parks in the Niger Delta which it noted will ensure the development of oil and gas infrastructure in the oil-producing states and create employment for the populace in the Niger Delta.
NEITI has been at the forefront of accountability and transparency in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria as lack of it has seen the country lose a lot of revenue to oil theft, sabotage and others
The passage and subsequent signing of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) will help increase transparency in the oil and gas industry and will enable NEITI and other industry stakeholders to set a new agenda for the sector.