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NUPRC vows to tackle crude oil theft, pipeline vandalism

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 Solomon Ezeme

The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), Engr. Gbenga Komolafe, has pledged to eliminate crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism in the country.

Engr. Komolafe, stated this while speaking at the ongoing 39th NAPE Annual International Conference & Exhibitions in Lagos on Tuesday. He blamed the drop in oil and gas production on oil theft, insecurity and dilapidated production facilities still in use.

The NUPRC Boss, noted that the agency is prepared to take out the menaces from the country’s oil and gas sector.

“The decline we have witnessed in production could be attributed to oil theft, insecurity, aged facilities decline in exploration and production enhancement initiatives,” he said.

He seized the opportunity to inform stakeholders of the agency’s plans for the sector as it relates to oil production in the country.

“As the upstream technical and commercial regulator, the NUPRC is committed to addressing these issues and also increasing our reserves to 40 million barrels and raising production to 3 million bpd (barrels per day) through several initiatives.

“As an institution, we have been able to initiate public-private partnership involving security agencies, private operators and other stakeholders in addressing the challenges and issues of crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism.”

Engr. Komolafe, also disclosed the Commission’s plans to foster the oil exploration goals of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.

He said, “More aggressive policies to curb and control leakages and spills will also be looked into. an initiative to reduce the cost of production, cutting across all techniques, is ongoing.

“We are making efforts to incentivize and encourage multi-type, speculative data collation to have state-of-the-art data to facilitate exploration activities.”

He stated that NUPRC has started engaging stakeholders across all sectors in discussions, to figure out the best ways to tackle oil theft and pipeline vandalism.

“There is an ongoing collaboration between our agency and communities to monitor pipelines in remote areas, through the deployment of state-of-the-art technology.

“Already as a Commission we have commenced consultation with relevant stakeholders towards the realization of these objectives,” Engr. Komolafe disclosed.

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