Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has revealed that curbing oil theft and pipeline vandalization is critical to restoring investors’ confidence and rebuilding trust in the oil and gas sector.
Dr Ogbonnaya Orji, Executive Secretary, NEITI, made this known while delivering a keynote address during the ongoing Pipeline Security, Oil Theft & the Implications for Economic Growth at the 2023 International Pipeline Technology and Security Conference, in Abuja, on Monday.
He explained that curbing oil theft and pipeline vandalization is necessary to restore investors’ confidence, rebuild trust in the industry as critical success factors to boost economic growth.
Dr. Orji emphasized that oil theft and losses in Nigeria have become a national emergency that poses a serious threat to oil exploration and exploitation with huge negative consequences on economic growth, business prospects and profit earnings by oil companies.
He further reaffirmed that based on NEITI’s 2021 Oil and Gas Industry Report released recently, the oil and gas sector accounted for 72.26 percent of Nigeria’s total export and foreign exchange, 40.55% of government revenue, and provided 19,171 jobs.
The NEIT Executive Secretary, therefore, emphasised that despite the strategic contributions of the sector, Nigeria is yet to derive optimal benefits from its oil and gas resources due to oil theft and losses through pipeline vandalism, pipeline integrity compromise, outright sabotage, and general insecurity in the region.