The stability and predictability of the Nigerian foreign exchange market would prove critical to repositioning the oil and gas industry in 2021 said Dr. TominiyiOwolabi, Partner, Oil and Gas, Olaniwun Ajayi LP.
Owolabi said beyond the passage and signing of the petroleum industry bill (PIB), Nigeria needs to build an environment that encourages investments and capital inflows. According to Owolabi entrenching the ease of doing business in the PIB, which covers the award of permits and licenses, would make Nigeria a globally competitive market.
Speaking further on the PIB, he said no law was perfect, which is why legislations go through periodic reviews. He called for a speedy passage and signing of the bill, which would help the country unlock trapped value within the sector.
Concerning the contentious issues of the “host community equity” contained in the PIB, he made a strong case for effective administration and full implementation of the bill.
Owolabi identified stronger gas infrastructure as critical to the industry in 2021 and acknowledged the National Gas Expansion Programme (NGEP) of the Federal Government would feed into the changing global dynamics of the energy business.
“The LNG Train 7 project is a boost to the local content activities in the Oil and Gas industry, with opportunities for job creation and skills development for the economy,” he said.
On American President Joe Biden’s focus on climate protection, renewable energy, and the green deal initiative. He said it signalled a shift in policy support for the industry.
Some of the issues in the policies of the Biden administration which he believed would change the industry landscape include;
- Tax benefit cuts for the Oil and Gas companies
- Overhaul of the regulations on investments in the industry
- Regulations on exploration in the country