NIGERIA’S premier indigenous engineering company with the strategic vision of providing basic/detailed engineering services, National Engineering and Technical Company, NETCO has announced a record turnover of N5 billion for the year-ended 2010, just as deepwater production in West Africa is said to have risen to as high as 2.5 million barrels of oil per day away from 85,000 barrels of daily oil production in year 2000.

NETCO’s Managing Director, Binitie Cassidy, who made this known while speaking with journalists on the sidelines of the Offshore West Africa, OWA 2011 oil and gas conference in Accra, Ghana.

According to him, “The global financial meltdown, the Petroleum Industry Bill and the unrest situation in the Niger Delta region, negatively impacted on the volume of jobs we had during last year,” even as he added that the company is going into procurement and construction services through partnerships to increase its capital base.

He said the PIB, which is the twin of the Local Content Act, is going through a lot of struggle in the National Assembly, adding that when passed, there are bound to be challenges.

He stressed that the company has spare headed the execution and practice of engineering jobs, procurement and construction supervision in all the project management required in the turnaround maintenance of Nigeria’s refineries.

To this extent, he added that the company does not want to export jobs to lift the level and standard of living of Nigerians, as the national oil company has the mandate to support government in job creation in the country.

“It is part of our mandate that we train our engineers and build capacities. With the Nigerian Content Act now in place, and the IOCs still bent on moving jobs abroad, we should also be thinking of how we can come up with strategies to keep the jobs within the country,” he said.

Cassidy explained that NETCO is in Ghana to give maximum support and confidence on technological awareness and to partner with the country, citing how it started with an American firm, Bechtel Inc.

“We are offering ourselves to Ghana National Oil Corporation and encouraging them to start an engineering arm, now that they are producing oil. They will want to refine, build petrochemical plants to keep adding value rather than just exporting, which Nigeria is guilty of.

NETCO started commercial operations in August 1990 with Bechtel, and executed more than 50 engineering projects, which include Chevron’s Onshore Gas Plant of the Escravos Gas Project Phase 1, a project that involved more than 143,000 engineering man_hours.

Elaborating on the deepwater production for West Africa, the Executive Director and General Manager Deepwater of Exxonmobil, Mr. Jide Ayo Vaughan, said that “deepwater production has been the biggest success story in West Africa in the past decade, from 85,000 barrels of oil per day in 2000, production has risen steadily to 2.5 million barrels of oil per day in 2010, a 30 fold increase. Over 25 billion of oil equivalent barrels have been discovered in deepwater West Africa since the early nineties and the potential remains significant.”

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