NNPC Explains Why Big International Oil Companies are Selling Off Assets, Leaving Nigeria
International oil companies are leaving Nigeria and shifting their portfolios to where they can add value to the journey towards carbon net-zero commitment, the group managing director, Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Mele Kyari, has said.
Mr Kyari said this in a speech at the 2022 Nigerian International Energy Summit (NIES2022) in Abuja on Monday.
Last year, Royal Dutch Shell announced its plan to offload onshore Nigerian oil assets in a bid to move to cleaner energy.
It said it was discussing with the federal government to sell its onshore oil assets in the country.
Also, Seplat Energy last week announced it has entered into a contract with Exxon Mobil, to buy Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited’s entire oil assets in Nigeria. That includes all of Exxon’s entire shallow water assets in the Niger Delta.
“Companies are divesting. They are leaving our country. That is the best way to put it,” Mr Kyari said.
“They are not leaving because opportunities are not here but because companies are shifting their portfolios where they can add value and not just that, but where they can also add to the journey towards carbon net-zero commitment.”
He said that transition must have sanity, and there must be justice in the energy transition.
He said the country must have “the most friendly fuel” in place in the next five to 10 years, while building its ability to use renewables.
“We can’t do without financing and we also know that there is a shortage of financing in this respect,” he added.
“Therefore, for us in NNPC, we are here to serve you. We are here to facilitate this process. We will work with our partners, and of course, you are seeing some of the consequences.
“We understand the necessity for divestment. We do know that there are issues. We understand that this must take place but also that it must be done in such a way that we can deal with issues around decommissioning and also make sure that whatever arrangement that is put in place ensures that we are also aligned along the energy transition journey that we are going to.”