…Unveils progamme for 2016 OTC
By Adewale Sanyaolu
THE Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN), has expressed worry over the depletion of the country’s crude reserves, saying no new addition has been recorded in the last 10 years.
PETAN is an association of Nigerian technical oilfield servicing companies in both the upstream and downstream sectors, which promotes the development of technology in the Nigerian oil and gas industry. Chairman of PETAN, Bank-Anthony Okoroafor, made the disclosure at an interactive session with Energy Editors in Lagos.
He explained that government should encourage more oil exploration activities so that what happened to the country’s ailing refineries will not happen to oil production as well.
“We have four refineries and we failed to maintain them as and when due until they packed up. We need to push for increased exploration activities if we want to remain a major oil-producing country in the world,” he said. He stated that drilling activities had become too low that exploration, which peaked in the late 60’s, dropped to a very low level in the last 10 years. Okoroafor maintained that this period of falling oil price has made it imperative for government to encourage exploration to shore up reserves. On fuel scarcity, PETAN urged the Federal Government to allow private investors run them in order to attain optimum performance, adding that government has no business running refineries.
“Refinery business is a business on its own; governments do not run such businesses. It was good at the initial stage for government to kick-start such investments and be able to build capacity. Nigerian government or any government for that matter, has no capacity to run refineries,” he said.
The Chairman said it was illegal and criminal for foreign oil companies to get jobs in onshore and swamps when competent indigenous companies are available.
Meanwhile, PETAN is leading Nigeria’s delegation to this year’s edition of the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) with the theme, “The Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry: Current Realities, Hidden Opportunities.” The conference is scheduled to take place between May 2 and 5, 2016 in Houston, Texas in United States of America (USA).