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Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja
The restructuring at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation has not ended but is ongoing, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and Group Managing Director of the oil firm, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has said.
According to Kachikwu, the restructuring is not only at the national oil firm, but will also affect other agencies and parastatals under his supervision.
Kachikwu stated that since his assumption of duty in August last year, a lot of reforms ranging from the first phase of restructuring and the recent one at the corporation had served as enablers for the introduction of new business models that had drastically reduced the losses recorded by the NNPC in the past.
The minister, according to a statement by the corporation, said this while playing host to the Managing Director of the World Bank, Sri Mulyani Indrawati, in Abuja.
Kachikwu said, “We first started with the softer issues, which were transparency issues, governance, restructuring and those were going well when we went straight into the business model.
“For example, when we came in, the NNPC was recording huge losses and we have been able to reverse that trend, and if we continue with that sort of trajectory then, we should be able to record profit in the near future.”
He added that a lot of institutional framework such as restructuring was still ongoing in all the parastatals under his watch.
The minister said, “Infrastructure is the toughest gap as a lot of depots and pipelines need urgent attention; and you need infrastructure, be it in the upstream and downstream sectors, for you to deliver results. But we will continue to throw solutions at them and try to get private sector participation.
“The other tough gap is funding. Just sheer funding of the upstream joint venture cash calls demands a lot of money and we are not pretending about it. Again, the President has travelled from point to point and a lot of people have offered to support.”
Kachikwu urged the World Bank to offer support in the area of institutional framework and training for the petroleum ministry and the NNPC, adding that the training would provide the necessary skills that were required to grow the oil and gas industry in the country.
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Source: Punch News