|By Okafor Joseph| March 14 – 2017|Naija247news.
Nigeria may lose its exempt rank in the OPEC oil production cut deal, as it restores its daily output to levels last seen before militant attacks on infrastructure in the Niger Delta started.
For the sometime, its seems to be little more than speculation coming from an oil industry insider quoted by Vanguard and Punch newspapers who stated that other members of the cartel may force the West African country – and second-biggest oil exporter on the continent – to join the cutting efforts.
With federal Government effort in restoring peace in Niger Delta communities and with the help of Nigeria’s vice president. “Nigeria appears well on the way to full restoration of its output that could see it pressured by its fellow OPEC members to end its exemption from the production agreement,” According to the source .
At the moment, Nigeria is pumping about 1.8 million barrels daily, after efforts from the federal government to restore peace in the oil-rich Delta started bearing fruit.
Currently, the group managing director of the Nigerian National Oil Corporation stated that OPEC is closely monitoring Nigeria and Libya, signaling that the exemption is irreversible. The two countries and Iran have been a drag on oil prices, as all three are actively increasing their oil output, casting doubt on the effect of the other members’ cutting efforts.
Last month, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo announced a $20-billion investment plan for the region, focused on the development of a so-called gas industrial park, aiming to turn the Delta into a regional gas hub. Shell, one of the biggest field operators in Nigeria, separately committed $1 billion to the Delta.
Still, in February, Nigerian Oil Minister Ibe Kachikwu announced between $50 billion and $100 billion in lost oil revenues due to the series of militant attacks on oil pipelines and related facilities in the Niger River Delta. Though the figures were considered by some to be highly inflated, the revenue loss argument is a legitimate one for Nigeria if OPEC tries to make it start curbing its output.