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The oil and gas sector has been enmeshed in corruption and mis-management, especially the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The Federal Government is expected to present the adopted PIB to the National Assembly in a matter of days now.
Why PIB has not been passed
The PIB has spent about five years with the National Assembly before the present session denied having seen any document called PIB. This called for the presentation of a harmonised version because in the past, there were several versions of the PIB at the National Assembly.
With this new development, the PIB is expected to be given preferential treatment by the National Assem-bly when it is finally submitted.
What prevented the PIB from being passed was the emergence of various versions of the bill which made it difficult to adopt a single version. It was gathered that the International Oil Companies (IOCs) operating a Joint Venture agreement with the NNPC, on behalf of the Federal Government did not favour the content of the old bill which they allegedly considered unfavou-rable.
As a result, the PIB that was first drafted in 2008 got mired in politics in the National Assem-bly, on the one hand, and varied interests in the oil and gas sector, on the other hand, which resulted in several versions of the bill.
With the resumption of the 7th National Assembly, it was re-presented but was withdrawn and supplanted by the new PIB.
What Nigerians should expect from the new PIB
One of the transformation agenda of this administration is the unbundling of the NNPC in other to compete favourably with its counterparts the world over.
The new bill will look at a number of areas that are quite critical. These are the unbundling of NNPC, the creation of an inspectorate unit, independent regulatory agencies, and the architecture of the fiscal regime in the oil and gas sector.
According to the Minister of Petroleum, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, the bill provided for the unbundling of the NNPC by the creation of a new National Oil Company, which she said would be independent and registered.
The bill also provides for the creation of a National Frontier Exploration Services, which will be the technical arm of the minister’s secretariat in order to robustly and actively drive data acquisition for various inland sedimentary data over the next two years.
Alison-Madueke said the PIB has also provided for the creation of an interesting fiscal regime and framework, which has been of interest to various stakeholders including the multinational oil companies operating in Nigeria.
“The details of that, we will give you henceforth. But suffice it to say that we will try to ensure the balance, and that Nigeria will accrue more revenue from the oil and gas sector,” the minister added.
The PIB also have provisions for a crude oil fiscal regime and the upliftment of the utilisation of domestic gas through the establishment of a new National Gas Company, whose purpose will be to drive the Gas Masterplan.
“Ministries and parastatals existing now, like the Petroleum Trust Fund, Petroleum Equalisation Fund, Institute of National Content Development Board, Petroleum Host Community Fund, will continue to exist until they are no longer expected to do so as the industry evolves,” the minister explained.Share