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NUPRC Holds 2024 Licencing Round Pre-Bid Conference



What appears to be a mere statement on the issue of licencing bid round after roadshow to confirm interest to get new investors in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry was put to rest in Lagos.  

Cablenews24 reports that the Chief Executive Officer, Upstream Regulatory Petroleum Commission, NUPRC, Gbenga Komolafe, stated that the country’s rich Oil and Gas reserve is a lucrative investment opportunity which local and international investors can invest.
This Online News Medium gathered that the NUPRC Boss was optimistic that the exercise would unlock the nation’s vast hydrocarbon potential, attract investment, and propel the country towards greater economic prosperity.
In his words: “Today we gather to discuss and deliberate on pathways to our collective energy future as we progress through an era of unprecedented challenges and opportunities. Under the visionary leadership of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Minister of Petroleum Resources.
“Nigeria has embarked on a transformative agenda that aligns with the most stringent global standards and commitments.”
He explained that the recent Presidential Executive Orders issued in March this year, aimed at improving the efficiency and attractiveness of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, were generously targeted to incentivize oil and gas development, introduced measures to balance the implementation of Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act, to ensure that oil and gas development was not hindered by local content bottlenecks.
The Executive Orders also include directives on reduction of contracting costs and timelines to enhance global competitiveness of our oil and gas industry and achieving higher rate of return on oil and gas investments.
“As you are aware, Nigeria is endowed with abundance of Crude Oil and Condensate Reserves and of Natural Gas Reserves representing above 30% and 33% respectively of the entire Oil and Gas reserves in Africa aside abundant mix of other renewable energy resources.”
According to Engr. Komolafe the purpose is to exploit and optimize abundant Hydrocarbon resources, Section 7(t) of the Petroleum Industry Act, PIA, empowered the commission, the Industry Regulator to conduct bid rounds for the award of PPLs and PMLs pursuant to the Act and applicable regulations.
It is on this premise that the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) recently announced the commencement of the 2024 Licensing Round at both in-country and outside the shores of the nation.
“It would be recalled that we commenced the announcement at the maiden edition of NEITI Dialogue Session, 2024, where the bid processes were thoroughly interrogated by the civil society and the media. This was subsequently followed by the announcement of commencement of the bid roundat the 2024 OTC in Houston, roadshow in Miami organized by Zeste Advisory, African Energies Summit in London organized by Frontier Network and Invest in Africa Energy Summit in Paris organized by Energy Capital Power.”
He added that the aim of the Commission is to project and attract robust local and foreign investors who will be participating in the bid exercise.
“Permit me to express that the NUPRC, on behalf of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is committed to conducting the licensing round in a fair, competitive and transparent manner and ensuring a level playing field for both indigenous and international investors. Our approach is underpinned by the robust legal framework of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021(PIA), which ensures compliance with best practices to boost investors confidence”.
In keeping with the provisions of the PIA and regulations made under the Act, the Commission has issued a licensing round guideline and published a licensing round plan for the blocks. This round introduces some meticulously selected blocks across diverse geological spectra: from the fertile onshore basins to the promising continental shelves and the untapped depths of our deep offshore territories. Each block has been chosen for its potential to bolster our national reserves and stimulate economic vitality.
Subsequently, on 13th May, 2024, the Commission opened a dedicated bid portal to allow prospective bidders register/submit Pre-Qualifications documents on or before the stipulated 25th June, 2024 deadline.
The Commission, in partnership with its multi-client partners, has acquired more geological data resulting in the identification of more prospective blocks.
The newly identified blocks will be added to the pool of blocks originally scheduled for the bid exercise, and their details will be made available on the bid round portal.
In addition to these blocks, the seven deep offshore blocks from the 2022 Mini-Bid Round Exercise which cover an area of approximately 6,700 km2 in water depths of 1,150m to 3,100m shall also be concluded along with this Licensing round.
To ensure the seamlessness of the Licensing Round exercise, the NUPRC, in collaboration with our National Data Repository and multi-client partners, guarantees access to comprehensive and high-quality geological data, facilitating informed decision-making and strategic investments.
The blocks on offer have extensive 2D and 3D seismic data coverage, including multi-beam and analog data. Additionally, a 3D reprocessed Pre-stack Time Migration of remarkable quality is also available to prospective bidders. The availability of advanced seismic datasets and analytical tools the Licencing Round presents us with the opportunity to reinforce Nigeria’s commitment to openness and transparency in line with the principles of the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative, EITI.
On the global scale, the Licensing Round will no doubt be beneficial to all stakeholders and will in the long run contribute to long-term global energy sufficiency. Interestingly, the Licensing Round process was formulated in cognisance of global energy sustainability goals.
The implementation process will, in addition to technical and commercial considerations, pay the requisite attention to strategies, processes and implementable plans consistent with net zero carbon emission targets, eliminating gas flares as well as overall environmental, social and governance, ESG, considerations.
The oil and gas industry in Nigeria has embraced the reality of energy transition and is taking strategic position to leverage on the opportunities presented by the unfolding era.
However, it is worthy to recognize that recent events around the globe indicate that fossil fuels will continue to be a core part of the global energy mix well into the future, even beyond the set 2050 targets for achieving net-zero carbon emission.
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