NIGERIA NEEDS OIL REVENUES TO SAVE THE ECONOMY
The Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo is of the opinion that revenues from crude oil will still be needed in Nigeria to rebuild the economy, diversify it and overcome oil dependency. He said that the country's chances of deriving maximum benefits from her petroleum industry has increasingly contracted on the backs of the challenges foisted by the global energy trend.
Speaking at the presentation of three books authored by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, the Vice President explained that trends in the global energy industry have shown that Nigeria cannot take as much benefits as it did in the past from the industry. He said the country would notwithstanding, take as much as it can from the industry to quickly diversify her economy.
In his speech, he said "As we move to diversify our economy, we are acutely aware that we need oil to get out of oil. Yet, our window of opportunity to benefit maximally from the petroleum industry is narrowing… the development of shale oil, which the author spends considerable time on, the increasing breakthrough in renewable energy use, the incredible speed of the expansion of the use of electric vehicles - Japan now has more electric charging stations than gas stations, all point inexorably that the party might be over sooner than we expected."
The Vice President also said to ensure that the country derives the maximum benefits from the petroleum sector in spite of the global challenges, the federal government has had to deal head-on with critical issues affecting the sector. He listed such issue to include the deregulation of the downstream sector and its continuing challenges.
Vandalism of pipelines and export facilities and the critical drop in production, gas-to-power issue, the urgent imperatives of local refining, cash call problems and the plans to exit that regime and empowering indigenous operators were the other issues he indicated during this speech. He further lamented that the country's oil and gas laws and policy are lacking of quality materials, stating that the three books written by Kachikwu would help fill that gap.
He maintained that Kachikwu clearly took advantage of the rare convergence of scholarship, contemporary experience and policy wisdom to deliver what are probably today the most significant contribution to the understanding of major issues and nuances of the Nigerian petroleum industry.
Similarly, Kachikwu explained at the launch that Nigeria is going through difficult times, where thinking outside the box is absolutely the key to the nation’s success.