‘No Guidelines yet on Marginal Field Bid Rounds’ – DPR


Chinazor Megbolu

The Department of the Petroleum Resources (DPR),  said there’s no guideline issuance on the proposed bid rounds of the country’s marginal oil fields yet.

The federal government agency in a statement noted that such exercise cannot be done in a secret manner.

The oil and gas industry regulator maintained that a lot of fake documents have been circulating on social media concerning the marginal field round.

The document noted that the last bids were done 17 years ago and therefore cannot be done in secrecy.

The Director, DPR, Mr. Sarki Auwalu during a presentation at the Oil and Gas Trainers Association of Nigeria (OGTAN) webinar series, explained that DPR is not a regulator but a facilitator of opportunities with no less than 2,176 oil-producing wells in Nigeria.

He posited that issuing licences will further help the country to fill existing production gaps in the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) quota to grow its reserves and potential in the frontier basins.

Auwalu in the statement hinted that conducting bid rounds for marginal fields in 2020 may not be unrealistic, considering the state of the global economy and the raging COVID-19 pandemic, saying  the timing was however, not right.

He buttressed  that the aforementioned is so because the oil industry was maturing.

He, however, frowned over the low level of domestic gas utilisation despite the huge gas reserves in Nigeria.

Auwalu said the government is working towards  ensuring that the country monetises gas and eliminates routine flaring by 2020.

He added that government is also introducing new alternatives to Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) through Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) or Compressed Natural Gas (CNG).

According to him; “Nigeria produces 8.3bsfcd of gas despite gas reserves of 203tcf. The country exports 41 per cent of its gas; uses 31 per cent in oil fields and plants for fuel, gas lift and re-injection; while 18 per cent is utilised in the domestic market for power and 10 per cent flared.

“There are opportunities for investment, especially in the areas of acquisition, brownfield optimisation, among others, going by gaps identified by the DPR. The Nigerian Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGFCP) scheme has been over-subscribed.

“We are hoping that opportunities in the gas space will be taken by investors as the government is clear about its intentions and programmes”.

Auwalu averred that oil and gas remain important in the global energy mix, despite gradual incursions by alternative energy sources as regards the Covid-19 pandemic spread.

“The industry has grown over the years from exploration licences granted to many companies to have strong national aspirations. We have nine basins that are critical to the nation, both for oil and gas.

“We have the technical capacity to produce 2.79mmb/d. About 200 per cent of proven reserves produced in Nigeria in 1970 replaced by new reserves. The oil and gas sector remains critical in driving the economy.

“DPR’s licence remains an enabler of investments. We are also trying to ensure that standards are being followed through conformity assessment and technology adaptation,” Auwalu.

He told stakeholders to take advantage of the National Data Repository (NDR), to access industry data for their operations and investments respectively.

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