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PIA will drive transformation of Nigeria’s energy sector — Osinbajo

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Vice President Yemi Osinbajo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo
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Vice President Yemi Osinbajo says the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), as well as Nigeria’s gas initiatives, will help transform Nigeria into a gas-based industrialised nation.

The vice president said the PIA would also create a better-managed petroleum industry with more value addition for both investors and Nigerians alike.

Osinbajo’s Spokesman, Laolu Akande, in a statement on Monday in Abuja, said the vice president spoke at  a virtual event to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Sahara (Energy) Group.

President Muhammadu Buhari, on Aug. 16, signed the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) 2021 into law.

Buhari had also approved a steering committee to oversee the process of implementation of PIA.

The gas initiatives of the Federal Government include the drive to encourage investments in gas production and optimize the nation’s enormous gas potential.

“Locally, we launch into the brave new world for the oil and gas industry with the PIA 2021.

“And this happily converges with the launch of the Year 2020 to 2030 as the ‘Decade of Gas Development for Nigeria’; this is a follow-up to the highly successful initiative of the Year 2020 as the Year of Gas.”

The vice president said that in Nov. 2020, the National Gas Expansion Programme was launched, which focused on the distribution of Compressed Natural Gas and Liquefied Petroleum Gas across gas stations operated by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

Osinbajo said that the main goal of the passage of the PIB and the gas initiatives aforementioned was to transform Nigeria into a gas-based industrialised nation through enhanced accelerated gas revolution

He said it was also to help create a better-managed petroleum industry where both the people of Nigeria and investors alike can extract value.

According to the vice president, the next 25 years will be defining for the energy industry.

Osinbajo commended Sahara Group for being a great ambassador for the Nigerian entrepreneurial brand.

“The group has demonstrated bold, innovative, knowledge-driven business models that are designed to seize opportunities in other countries and have done so with remarkable success in many African countries.

“Already the wealthier nations and their institutions have banned all public investments in certain fossil projects, including natural gas.

“Examples include the EU, the UK, Germany and Denmark, as well as specific institutions such as the Swedfund from Sweden, Norway’s Sovereign Wealth Fund, the largest in the world, CDC, the development finance institution from the UK, the European Investment Bank, and the Investment Fund for Developing Countries from Denmark.

“The World Bank and other multilateral development banks are being urged by their shareholders to do the same.

“The AfDB is increasingly unable to support large natural gas projects in the face of shareholder pressure from their European members.

“Barely two weeks ago, the UN Secretary-General made a strong call, that ‘Countries should end all new fossil fuel exploration and production, and shift fossil fuel subsidies into renewable energy.”

The vice president disclosed that the Federal Government was building coalitions with other affected countries to urge a just transition as Nigeria advanced to zero transmission,

“I will urge indigenous energy companies such as your group to join in the urgent advocacy that is required to prevent the disaster that would result from defunding oil and gas projects,” he said.

Osinbajo said that the last two decades had brought significant growth of Nigerian oil companies.

He congratulated the Sahara Team for its 25 years of achievements in the energy industry and wished it more remarkable 25 years ahead.

Osinbajo urged the group and other indigenous energy companies to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the African Continental Free Trade Agreements.

Other speakers at the event included the President of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mr Felix Tshisekedi, and President of the African Development Bank, Dr Akinwumi Adesina.

The Director-General of Bureau of Public Enterprises, Mr Alex Okoh, and other top government officials attended the event.(NAN)

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Business & Economy

President Buhari transmits Business Facilitation bill to N’Assembly

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President Muhammadu Buhari
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The Senate has received the Business Facilitation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2022, forwarded to the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari, for consideration and passage.

The bill was accompanied by a letter dated 17th June, 2022.

The letter, addressed to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, was read during plenary on Tuesday.

President Buhari, in the letter, explained that the expeditious consideration and passage of the bill would promote the ease of doing business in Nigeria.

It reads, “Pursuant to Sections 58(2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), I forward herewith the Business Facilitation (Miscellaneous Provision) Bill 2022 for the kind consideration of the Senate.

“Business Facilitation (Miscellaneous Provision) Bill 2022 seeks to promote the war of doing business in Nigeria by amending relevant legislation.

“While hoping that this submission will receive the usual expeditious consideration of the Senate, please accept, Distinguished Senate President, the assurances of my highest consideration.”

 

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N5 trillion urgently needed to cushion effects double digits increase on ordinary Nigerians – World Bank

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The World Bank has warned that Nigeria could lose about N5trillion in 2022 from gasoline subsidies.

The bank also said that N5 trillion is urgently needed to cushion ordinary Nigerians from the crushing effect of double-digit increases in the cost of basic commodities.

The World Bank said in it Nigeria Development Update (NDU) released on Tuesday in Abuja.

The report said: “When we launched our previous Nigeria Development Update in November 2021, we estimated that Nigeria could stand to lose more than N3 trillion in revenues in 2022 because the proceeds from crude oil sales, instead of going to the federation account, would be used to cover the rising cost of gasoline subsidies that mostly benefit the rich”.

World Bank Country Director for Nigeria Shubham Chaudhuri, however noted: “Sadly, that projection turned out to be optimistic. With oil prices going up significantly, and with it, the price of imported gasoline, we now estimate that the foregone revenues as a result of gasoline subsidies will be closer to 5 trillion Naira in 2022.

“N5 trillion is urgently needed to cushion ordinary Nigerians from the crushing effect of double-digit increases in the cost of basic commodities, to invest in Nigeria’s children and youth, and in the infrastructure needed for private businesses small and large to flourish, grow and create jobs.”

The report noted: “Nigeria is in a paradoxical situation: growth prospects have improved compared to six months ago but inflationary and fiscal pressures have increased considerably, leaving the economy much more vulnerable”.

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Nigeria’s banking sector now immune to economic shock – NDIC

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Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has said that the banking sector is now immunized to withstand shocks that may impact the economy and the financial system.

Mr Bello Hassan, Managing Director of NDIC said this at a retreat for members of the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions with the NDIC, in Lagos.

Any change in fundamental macroeconomic variables or relationships that has a significant impact on macroeconomic outcomes and measures of economic performance, such as unemployment, consumption, and inflation, is referred to as an economic shock.

Mustapha Ibrahim, Executive Director (Operations), who represented the NDIC boss, said Nigerian banking industry was currently resilient to most of these difficulties, particularly external shocks over which the Corporation had no control.

He said: “We have tried to immunise the system to withstand shocks that may be impacting on the economy and the financial system”.

Hassan, further said that effective risk-based management remained critical to a safe and sound financial system.

“The NDIC and the Central Bank of Nigeria have a very robust supervisory framework under the risk-based supervisory format the risk-based approach is actually proactive. For the most part, we try to anticipate all these risks – Macro, micro, domestically and globally – to address them continuously.

“So, it is so dynamic that we also are constantly on a real-time basis, monitoring the industry continuously and fine-tuning our supervisory tools, both onsite and offsite, to mitigate some of the challenges the banks may be facing,” he said.

On his part, Chairman, Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions, said the retreat demonstrated progress in creating lasting and workable relationships in the national interest.

Sani, who was represented by Senator Olubunmi Adetunbi, was optimistic that the outcome will aid in the strengthening of the financial and banking sectors, particularly the corporation’s supervisory and regulatory role.

“The National Assembly and NDIC are key institutions critical to the growth and development of the Nigerian economy. While we provide the legal and institutional frameworks, NDIC carries out its regulatory or supervisory responsibilities in order to safeguard the banking sector.

“Engagement of this nature gives us the platform to deeply look into our activities and responsibilities and also examine how far we have gone in carrying out our mandate as required. It helps in injecting fresh ideas into our operations which will materialise into an improved, effective and efficient service delivery to Nigerians,” he said.

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