Nigeria is adopting the security infrastructure similar to that of Saudi’s Aramco to protect its oil pipelines and curb theft.
According to the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), Mele Kyari, the new security architecture would be unveiled soon and help to stop massive oil pipeline vandalism that has resulted in the country losing 30per cent of produced volumes to crude thieves.
Africa’s biggest oil producer has been unable to meet its OPEC quota since the beginning of this year due to rampant theft and vandalism.
Output fell to 1.43 million barrels a day in the three months through June, the lowest quarterly production since 2016, according to the nation’s statistics agency.
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo, has disputed oil theft figures from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) and the Ministry of Petroleum Resources.
The organization and the ministry have variously put the total quantity of barrels stolen per day at between 200,000 to 400,000 per day.
However, the Gambo said that it wasn’t possible to steal that quantity of oil in a day.
He noted that the data may not only be from oil theft, maintaining that the government authorities were making the error of calculating losses due to force majeure as well as shut-ins as part of oil being stolen.
Gambo stressed: “In as much as there is no perfect system, the phenomenon of oil theft and losses must be properly de-conflicted in order to profer lasting solutions to the malaise which is currently bedevilling our economic resources.
“Here, we need to understand the differences between oil theft and of course, oil loss. While oil theft is siphoning oil from vandalised pipes into barges, oil losses occur when there is non-production, especially during shut-ins and force majeure as the federal government does not earn the desired revenue it should.”
According to him, oil losses could be as a result of metering errors on the operating platforms, stressing that the volume of crude oil shut-ins from non-production are often added to oil theft data instead of accounting for them as oil losses by the authorities.