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NCDMB, PETAN call for better collaboration in Nigeria’s oil, gas sector

The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Simbi Wabote, has called for better collaboration among players in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.

He also canvassed similar measures among indigenous oil companies and at the regional level, as a means of sustaining the industry in the sub-Saharan Africa.

Wabote made the call at the ongoing third edition of the West African International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (WAIPEC), with the theme: “Innovation-Sustaining Saharan Oil and Gas Production through innovation and collaboration.”

He explained: “The Hydrocarbon discoveries in the West African region presents an opportunities for innovation, and collaboration across borders. ECOWAS has done a remarkable job to enhance free movement across West Africa, but there is a bigger opportunity to double the current $300 billion/year trade level across the region.”

“The old adage that two heads are better than one, has been around for over four centuries, more effective problem solving happens when businesses combine resources; finances and infrastructure.”

Also speaking, Chairman, Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN), Bank Anthony Okoroafor, counseled on the need for strategic collaboration between Nigeria, and new African entrants in the oil and gas market.

“The oil and gas industry in Nigeria is over 60 years, and a lot of experiences have been gathered over the period. The new entrants into the market do not need to go through the route that Nigeria went, and repeat the same mistakes,” he said.

He restated the organisation’s willingness to collaborate with similar associations and groups within the region to enhance the industry and add value to it.

Wabote solicited the need for inter-African knowledge sharing and connection, the potentials of Nigerian experts and their capability, as against what he called, the colonial mentality of engaging the Europeans to develop resources within the continent.

Also speaking, the Ugandan delegate/General Manager, Uganda National Oil Company, Michael Nkambo Mugerwa, spoke on the country’s plan of sharing the Uganda Refinery Project Kabaale, Hoima District.

He stated: “A major part of our future is joint venturing, not just for capital but for knowledge sharing. We’re getting interests from east African states to invest in the refinery.”

Stressing further, Wabote said: “We need to continually discuss, protect and market the established capability, as well as share new ideas and perspectives to overcome current challenges.”

While noting that opportunities for collaboration in Nigeria are huge, he said they remain largely untapped. He stressed the need for business outfits to aggregate into more formidable entities, having seen “some joint ventures and partnerships to take advantage of opportunities, but we need more of such.”

He urged PETAN members to widen their envelope of collaboration, by coming together to jointly bid for the execution of one of the big-ticket projects.