Federal Government to award oil blocks to Niger Delta indigenes

The Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu has said the Federal Government plans to award to indigenes of the Niger Delta region marginal fields’ oil blocks abandoned by the oil majors as being not commercially viable.

The Minister disclosed this in Lagos at the Oil and Gas Trade Group Roundtable organised by the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce to discuss “The Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry: Confronting Realities” where he said that the plan was part of the larger stability incentive scheme under a harmonised holistic development plan for the Niger Delta.

Represented by the Acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum, John Eboigbe, the minister also promised that government would sustain institutional engagements with stakeholders in the Niger Delta region to nip agitations in the bud, while promising greater transparency in the industry’s operations.

Kachikwu assured that the oil and gas sector remained critical to the nation’s economy, admitting that inadequate investment, lack of local capacity, limited cash call, poor economic structure, pipeline vandalism and other factors continued to hinder the sector’s contribution, particularly in the area of job creation, but however promised that the oil and gas industry was adopting a sustainable and well-structured stakeholder management framework that would address its peculiar needs and circumstances.

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