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NEITI uncovers $20b recoverable revenues

The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has uncovered $20 billion recoverable revenues, its Executive Secretary, Waziri Adio, said yesterday.

He spoke in Kiev, Ukraine at the ongoing 42nd meeting of the Extractive Industry Initiative (EITI) Board.

Meanwhile, the International Board of EITI has ranked Nigeria for its ‘Satisfactory Progress’ in the implementation of its principles in the country’s extractive sector.

This ranking is second highest in EITI implementation. The global body also applauded the country for using EITI process to shape reforms and improve transparency in the extractive sector.

Adio said: “Through NEITI’s reports and interventions, Nigerians now know more about the operations of the sector, which despite low commodity prices, still remains the backbone of their economy.

“Citizens, civic groups and the media are now better armed with information to ask probing questions and make informed contributions to governance

“Over time, various governments have used information from NEITI’s reports to recover almost $3billion that would have ended up unpaid.”

Nigeria’s pioneering use of multi-stakeholder governance to disclose data on its upstream extractives value chain was recognised by EITI Board.

The country has now become the first Anglophone African country to have made satisfactory progress in implementing all the requirements of EITI Standard.

It now faces the challenge of entrenching this transparency in routine government and company systems.

Chair of EITI Board, Fredrik Reinfeldt, said: “Nigeria’s implementation of the EITI Standard had remained in many respects a model for implementing countries globally.

“Apart from its scope, NEITI reports have shaped major reforms initiated in the sector, including those by the national oil company, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). We hope the government will continue to use NEITI process to inform its policies for better governance,” he added.

Over 15 years of implementing EITI standard, the NEITI has become an independent watchdog that holds stakeholders in the crucial hydrocarbons – and more recently solid minerals – sector to account.

Since 2017, NEITI has disclosed key data on its allocation of licences, on the administration of oil and gas subnational transfers and on crude sales and other processes within the NNPC.

Minister of Finance and EITI Board member, Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed, said: “The NEITI reports form the basis for reforms in the oil, gas and mining industry, as was laid out in the 2015 political campaign manifesto of the present administration.

“Inspired by EITI, the Nigerian government now conducts monthly routine reconciliations for all sectors, not just the extractives, which have increased government revenues,” she added.