The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) the Nigeria petroleum regulatory body has proclaimed that over 600 companies have indicated interest in ongoing prequalified exercise of 57 marginal oilfields bidding round in Nigeria. This was recently disclosed by Mr. Auwalu Sarki, the country’s Director of DPR.
According to Mr Sarki, Nigeria last marginal field bid round was performed 17 years ago and that the present bidding round Of the 57 marginal oilfield had inversely attracted widespread interest owing to perceived transparency and credibility of the procedures put in place by the agency.
“First I will say that we have really witnessed an increase in bidders after the extension of the deadline to June 21. There has been almost 30 per cent increase in the participation. If you are making a bid or auctioning any oil field, you need to get 10 people per field really going after the field. We have 57 fields and we have over 600 companies. So we can say that we are celebrating success so far.” Mr Sarki Emphasized.
He further expressed profound happiness on the process of the exercise so far as a good achievement to the agency in particular and good people of Nigeria in general. On the commitment of the prospective bidding companies, Mr Sarki expressed his confidence on the credibility of these companies who interestingly investing in the country at this point in time when the world is witnessing downturns in crude oil market owing to COVID – 19 pandemic. Mr Sarki stressed that the agency has strategized programmes in place that will invariably a null the effect of a second wave of COVID-19 pandemic on Nigeria’s oil and gas industry.
He highlighted some of these strategies which include: reduction of the number of workers on offshore locations and construction sites, encourage decontamination, testing and working with health agencies, especially the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. The DPR director said the agency would continue to ensure that companies are COVID-19 compliant and adhere to the 14-day quarantine protocols for workers. The outbreak of corona virus case earlier witnessed on board an offshore vessel in one of Nigeria offshore platform triggered a drastic measure imposed by the agency mandating all Major oil companies and their contractors to revise to 28 days working shift to all their workers.
“We have outlined survival kits post-COVID-19 which involves four key strategies. These include rationalization of portfolios, strategic partnerships among Nigerian companies, new business opportunities using technology to get it done and cost control and management to see how best we can strive to take the nation to the next level.” The DPR boss outlined.
“Then, expectations are four Innovation and resilience, partnership and collaboration as well as industry growth and business development. This is what we are sending in the message to the entire industry because we need each other to really awaken the giant in this country and make it an investor’s haven.” He further posited.
For the industry, stakeholders and the world at large to overcome this next level projection according to Mr. Sarki, they must devise ways to deal with the triple challenges posed by the coronavirus, fall in oil prices and supply glut.
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