Marginal field operators in the nation’s oil and gas industry have bemoaned their challenges and handicaps since they got their fields in the aftermath of the bid round held in 2003.
Their concern emanated from the fact that out of the 24 oil fields awarded in 2003, only 7 fields are producing (averaging an aggregate gross production of 27,200 barrels of oil per day and 35 million standard cubic feet per day of gas). This accounts for about two percent of national production.
Speaking at the marginal field workshop organized in Lagos, Mr. Debo Fagbami, Chief Operating Officer, COO, Xenergi Limited, said that lack of access to fund is the greatest challenge facing the marginal field owners.
According to him, most of the field owners have not been able to raise about $30 million to invest in their oil fields. Apart from that, they lack technical know-how. As a result, they have not been able to put up credible and bankable business plan. He explained that some of the oil field owners also have partnership complications as they were strange bed fellows from the outset, thereby stalling whatever fruitful decisions that might signal their take off.
Also speaking, Mr. Chiedu Ebie, Managing Director, Millennium Oil and Gas Company Limited, said lack of collaborative spirit among Nigerian entrepreneurs has negatively affected the non development of most of the marginal oil fields. According to him, the oil and gas industry is highly technical and capital intensive and therefore requires collaboration in terms of fund raising and technical know-how.