Newcross EP Limited Frustrated by Delay in MT Prestigious Vessel Clearance


Newcross Exploration and Production Limited has voiced its frustration over the prolonged delay in the clearance of its MT Prestigious vessel by the Nigerian Navy. The vessel, apprehended on May 2, 2024, by the Niger Delta Renaissance Network on allegations of illegal bunkering, continues to be under Navy surveillance in Bonny, Rivers State, despite claims of its release.

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Victor Soje, Managing Director of Newcross Exploration and Production Limited, underscored the significant financial implications of the delay. These include the suspension of over 100,000 barrels per day in crude oil production, disruption of gas delivery for domestic and export supply (including NLNG), and disruption of terminal operations and lifting programs due to low stock inventory. These impacts affect key stakeholders and operators relying on this evacuation solution.

In an update to the National Security Advisor, Chief of Defense Staff, Chief of Naval Staff, and the Chief Executive Officer of NNPC Limited, the company clarified the situation surrounding the vessel’s apprehension. The “IGP Illegal Bunkering Team” alleged illegal bunkering activities on May 2, 2024, based on reports, but no clear evidence was shared. Newcross EP is prepared to cooperate with legal authorities but seeks intervention to ensure due process is followed and the issue is resolved swiftly.

Commodore Aiwiyor Adams-Aliu, Director of Information for the Nigerian Navy, confirmed that the vessel remains in Navy custody.

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