By Yemie Adeoye
THE Nigerian oil and gas industry stood tall yesterday in Houston Texas as the 41st Offshore Technology Conference, OTC, kicked off with the participation of over 3,000 companies and 70, 000 representatives/delegates from more than 120 countries around the globe.
The OTC is the worldâ€™s largest offshore oil industry event with exhibitors bringing their latest technologies and equipment to the fore for the benefit of the industry.
Nigeria is putting up an impressive show at the event with the presence of more than 20 indigenous companies with visible presence in the local oil and gas industry.
With the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC as the major anchor, the Nigerian stand at the OTC which was declared open by the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke has been a beehive of activity with potential investors trooping in to avail themselves of available business opportunities in one of the worldâ€™s biggest oil producing nation.
The search for investment opportunities in Nigeria is helped by the installation of ultra modern info-pots in customised information kiosks by the NNPC to provide essential information about the corporation and the Nigerian oil and gas industry to aspiring investors.
Under the arrangement a visitor to the NNPC/Nigerian stand can avail himself of information about the industry in Nigeria by punching at the info-pot which has â€˜touch screenâ€™ features.
Alison-Madueke commends stakeholders
Commenting on the overwhelming presence of the NNPC and Nigerian operators at the OTC 2010, Mrs Alison-Madueke thanked the Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria, PETAN, for ensuring that the oil and gas industry in Nigeria is maximising the benefit of cross fertilisation of ideas garnered through exposure to the OTC through the years.
â€œThe cutting edge technologies that we have been exposed to here within this sector are obvious to all our operators. It is also very heartening to see many of our indigenous service companies who as you know form the crucial underbelly that carries the industry in Nigeria,â€™â€™ Alison-Madueke noted.
She noted that coming on the hills of the signing of the Nigerian Contend Development law and the anticipated coming of the Petroleum Industry Bill, Nigeriaâ€™s participation at the OTC 2010 is pertinent and rewarding for the sector.
Answering question on the commencement date for the next oil licensing rounds, the Minister noted that the bid will commence as soon as possible in strict compliance with due process and transparency. Mrs Alison-Madueke also pledged to streamline the contracting processes and procedures in the oil industry so as to eliminate time wastage.