NNPC laments over $800m revenue loss to contract breaches

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) yesterday said it lost over $800million revenue to all the stakeholders owing to breaches of contracts of its old regime.

The state-run oil firm said this year, it lost over 60 days of production due to incessant breaches on the Trans Forcados Pipeline (TFP) despite having a security contract in place. In terms of production numbers, this translates to over 11 million barrels of crude oil which on face value equates to over $800million in lost revenue to all the stakeholders in the matrix which include NNPC, its Joint Venture partners and the Nigerian Federation.

The oil firm has explained the reported award of oil infrastructure surveillance contract to an indigenous firm, Ocean Marine Solutions for the protection of the strategic 87-kilometre TFP.

It said the decision to assign the TFP surveillance package to Ocean Marine Solutions was reached after consideration of huge losses on TFP and rigorous appraisal of the company’s impressive record of performance on the Bonny-Port Harcourt and Warri-Escravos crude evacuation lines.

In a statement, NNPC said the new contract which requires the contractor to pay for any damage to any inch of pipeline under its watch, offers immeasurable benefits to the NNPC, its Joint Venture partners, the host communities and the entire federation.

According to the NNPC, faced with massive losses in projected revenue, stakeholders in the TFP which today account for daily production throughput of over 250, 000 barrels of crude oil were unanimous in the decision to seek better ways of ensuring reliability and availability of the line.

The NNPC stated that no responsible business entity or government would allow this level of hemorrhage to go on without acting swiftly to protect the enterprise from further bleeding.

It said based on this scenario, Ocean Marine Solution was assigned to handle the TFP under the proof of concept arrangement which is yielding great results in the Bonny-Port Harcourt and Escravos-Warri crude evacuation lines.

Under this deal, the surveillance company is obligated to protect the lines and bear the cost of repairs if and when there is any breach to the pipeline.

This arrangement is totally different from the old order where the contractor gets paid for surveillance duties and totally exempted from repair cost or any form of responsibility in the event of any line break or breach to the pipeline he is paid to watch.

On the alleged cost of the new contract, it said the cost of the new deal pales into insignificance when placed side by side and value-for-money with the old arrangement.

“In 2018, after we lost over 60 days of production, under the old contract, the NNPC and its stakeholders spent over $32million on repairs, protection of the TFP and clean-up. This is a verifiable fact which makes the new deal not only better but far more rewarding to all stakeholders,’’ it said.

The NNPC also dismissed insinuations that the entry of OMS into the TFP would spelled doom for host community youths on the pipeline right-of-way currently rendering sundry services to the old service provider.

It argued that the issue of TFP security is purely a matter of criminality which the host communities along the pipeline corridor are totally against. It noted that long before now, NNPC had evolved a host community participation model which naturally incorporated youths within the vicinity of its assets and areas of operations as veritable stakeholders cum participants in the running of such facility.

“We want to state for the umpteenth time that based on our community engagement model for asset protection, OMS is obligated to engage youths in the TFP right-of-way in executing its mandate thus reports of imminent loss of jobs by host community youths are totally incorrect and mischievous,” the oil firm said.

It also noted that community participation model is already in practice on Escravos-Warri and Bonny-Port Harcourt lines and these host communities have absolutely no issues with the Corporation or the pipeline surveillance service provider.

NNPC argued that the employment opportunities for youths in the area would be bolstered by the assured all-year availability of the TFP under the new proof of concept agreement.

On the allegation of non-adherence to due process in the offer of the surveillance deal, NNPC explained that all Federal Government-approved procurement processes and procedures in the award of highly sensitive national security contract were followed to the letter.

NNPC said it was the same steps and procedures that were followed in the award of all pipeline security contracts including the award of the TFP surveillance contract to the old contractor.

It assured that as an entity entrusted by the government and people of the country to oversee the nation’s vast hydrocarbon resources for the good of all stakeholders, it cannot in good conscience allow extraneous considerations to sway its judgment on a straight forward commercial undertaking like the TFP surveillance project.

“The NNPC and its stakeholders will continue to do everything legally possible to recover our pipelines, cut our losses, reduce downtime, improve crude production and by extension increase inflow of revenue to all the tiers of the Federation in line with our mandate,” it said.

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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