ABUJA – President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday pledged to introduce appropriate reforms and fresh policies in the oil and gas sector to boost the nation’s economy.
The President made this known at separate meetings in Abuja with delegates from Exxon-Mobil and the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Company (NLNG).
He said the administration would streamline activities of government agencies in the sector to remove current bureaucratic bottlenecks impeding operations of oil and gas companies.
According to him, the government will also give priority to the security of oil and gas installations as well as maritime security, to boost national earnings from the sector.
“It is the responsibility of the Federal Government to secure the environment.
“The vandalism of oil installations and pipelines, piracy, oil theft and the fall in the international price of oil have made our economic situation very disturbing.
“This government will do all within its powers to secure the environment and encourage more investments in the oil sector,’’ he said.
He reassured the delegation that the administration would make Nigeria’s oil and gas industry “more globally competitive.’’
Buhari assured the NLNG delegation of his administration’s full support to the company’s plan to expand its total production capacity.
The President regretted that political squabbles and interference in the past had prevented the firm from attaining its full potentials.
“Today, we are celebrating six trains. It could have been 12 trains if all had gone according to plan,’’ he added.
The NLNG delegation included the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Dr Joseph Dawha and the Managing Director of NLNG, Mr Babs Omotowa.
Omotowa requested the President’s support for Train 7 of the NLNG, which, he said, would create additional 18,000 construction jobs and generate three billion dollars to government when operational.
He also asked for Presidential intervention to reduce the number of government agencies operating around the plant, which had made its business globally uncompetitive.
The Exxon-Mobil delegation was led by the company’s Managing Director, Mr Nolan O’Neal.(NAN)
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