The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) says it will partner Oil Trading and Logistics (OTL) Africa Downstream to sanitise and drive the country’s oil and gas industry. The Authority Chief Executive (ACE) of NMDPRA, Mr Farouk Ahmed, said this when a team of the Advisory Board of OTL visited him on Thursday in Abuja. “We align with your ideas on why we need to collaborate and have assured our willingness and interest to work with OTL. We want to collaborate and partner in all industry matters as we need to clean the mess in the industry created over the years. We need to work together and sanitise the industry; to do that, we need a capable, willing and bold regulator to make decisions. And, for you industry players, to be humble enough to accept the decisions for the improvement and progress of the industry, and it is a win-win situation for us all,” Ahmed said.
On support to OTL, the NMDPRA boss said it was a support to the industry and would be looked into. He said “we will participate because we want to be part of those driving it so that we can get better seat. Otherwise, we will be left behind. By that, we are seen, our work is seen and felt our suggestions, input, and ideas can also be incorporated from the beginning, so we welcome that.” Ahmed assured that the authority would work with the OTL team in its future events, adding that there would be an internal commitment by the workers of NMDPRA to drive the sector. Earlier, the chairman of OTL Advisory Board, Mr Tunji Oyebanji, appreciated the authority’s support, while pledging the commitment of OTL to take the industry to the next level.
Oyebanji, represented by the group’s Executive Vice Chairman, Dr Emeka Akabogu, however, called for increased participation of the authority in the activities of the OTL. “We will keep working to ensure that we facilitate an environment that corresponds to best practices for sustainable growth and development of the Nigerian Downstream petroleum industry. We are, therefore, working towards a truly ‘Big-tent’ event for 2023, which incorporates all major sub-sector groups, most of which are regulated by the Authority.
“We look forward to the full participation of the Authority yet again in 2023 and use this opportunity to request that it designates an official to join the Planning Committee. This will ensure that the Authority’s perspectives and focus for the event are more realistically incorporated into the event schedule and thematic focus,” he said. Oyenbaji said the group in 2022 focused on the theme, Regulating Downstream Energy Transition in Dynamic Times, to highlight the importance of regulation and compliance in achieving downstream operational efficiency.
He said: “We witnessed six sessions on various issues including fuels, gas, refining, lubricants. “Over the course of three days, more than 1200 persons across industry sectors interacted, gaining knowledge, doing business, closing deals and expanding the frontiers of the sector, among other things.” The chairman said it was evident that operators were concerned about getting certainty in policy direction and would be ready to unlock value once common interests were addressed. That is why 2023 is a crucial year for the industry in Nigeria.”(NAN)